Having a brand message that resonates with and attracts customers is a big component of any brand. Your brand messaging can help you grow a loyal following, bring in new customers and target specific audiences. It’s therefore easy to see why brands focus so much on their brand messaging strategies.
The most successful brands are all built on the foundation of a well-crafted brand image and targeted messaging. So, if you feel this is an area that could be improved in your own business strategy, read on to learn more about the power of brand messaging and how to use it effectively.
What is brand messaging?
Brand messaging is a broad term that describes how the public perceives your brand. It is how people learn what you’re all about and decide whether your brand is for them. Moreover, it consists of the words, tone, language, and any other type of communication that forms the identity or “voice” of your brand.
Brand messaging tells your audience what your brand stands for, and why they should trust it. As such, every brand needs to have messaging that attracts appropriate customers and stimulates a desire for its services. Additionally, brand messaging ties into every aspect of your company from marketing to public relations. Therefore, having an effective brand messaging strategy that resonates, will inspire people to choose your product or service over the competition.
Some examples of brand messaging are:
- Ad slogans and campaigns
- The tone of voice and language used in copy
- Your sales pitch
- Online and printed marketing materials
How to create an effective brand messaging strategy
1. Understand your target audience:
Who you are selling to will have a big impact on what your brand messaging should be. It is important to identify your brand’s target audience and understand them. However, if your target audience is too broad, your copy will not resonate with them effectively. Hence, it is important that you focus on your ideal buyer and go beyond basic demographics. Aim to understand their thought process, behavioral habits, and what influences them, including their belief and values.
2. Marketing your unique selling proposition (USP):
An important part of your brand image is your unique selling proposition or USP. Your USP is the reason why your customers should choose your brand over the competition. Additionally, it is the core solution that your product or service provides to your customer. Hence, having a proper USP and understanding its benefits for your target buyer is important for your brand marketing strategy. Your copy should clearly communicate why your USP is unique and great for your target audience.
3. Tone of voice and language:
The tone of voice and language used across platforms operated by your brand must align with your brand messaging strategy. Moreover, this consistency will make your brand recognizable and make your brand image memorable to your customers. Using the right tone and language for your target audience can greatly increase your popularity, conversions, and ultimately, loyalty. For example, using current pop culture references and everyday language will appeal to younger generations.
4. Your brand story:
Every brand has a story and telling this story is an important component of your brand messaging strategy. One of the best resources on this topic is Building a StoryBrand by Donald Miller, which we will talk about more below. Creating a brand story will help you effectively communicate your USPs and values with your customers and show them why they should choose you.
Lessons from Building a StoryBrand by Donald Miller
Building a StoryBrand by Donald Miller is a great resource if you’re just getting started with your brand messaging. The ‘StoryBrand’ process is his solution to the struggle of communicating your brand messaging to your audience. Furthermore, his revolutionary method provides a way to successfully sell your product or service, through the seven universal story points that all humans respond to. The book teaches you how to create a brand story, using these seven points effectively.
The seven universal points from Building a StoryBrand by Donald Miller are:
1. Make the audience the ‘hero’ and not yourself:
Your brand must never try to be the hero and make the customer feel like they are being ‘saved’ from distress. Specifically, don’t portray yourself as some kind of knight in shining armor. The key is to identify your target audience and make them the ‘hero’ in your brand story, to initiate change.
2. Show that you understand the customer’s problems or needs:
Having a strong understanding of your customers’ problems is also vital to crafting your brand messaging strategy. In your brand story, the ‘villain’ represents the conflict or problems that your target audience is facing. You can then offer a product or service that addresses or solves them, to show that you are focused on your customer’s needs. Empathizing with your customer is essential to your success, as it will help you gain their trust by making them feel understood.
3. Be a guide to your customer and not a hero:
The role of your brand in your brand story should be that of a guide or an ally to your customer. Much like a supporting character in a story that helps the protagonist, your brand should be a guide. In other words, your brand should act as an advisor with the solution to your customer’s problems. A guide is empathic and understanding, making the customer feel safe and comfortable.
4. Have a clear plan to make the customer comfortable:
Having a clear plan mapped out in your brand story helps your customer to trust you and grow more comfortable as they learn more. Highlighting how far you’ve come and what you have planned, showcases your brand’s potential to spark your customers’ interest and make them more likely to join your community.
5. You need a call to action for your customers to succeed:
In your brand story, the guide needs to call the hero to action. Similarly, your brand needs a clear call to action if your customers are going to convert. Encouraging your customer to act on the advice you’ve provided, makes it more likely that they’ll engage with your product or service.
6. Understand and discuss risk or potential for failures:
First-time customers are always going to be concerned about the risks of choosing your brand – after all, it’s human nature to fear failure. Hence, making the client aware of any potential issues or failures is essential. Having a clear understanding of what to expect will help the client make a well-informed decision.
7. Explain the importance of your brand and the potential for success:
Much like any story, your brand story should come to a satisfactory end as well. Therefore, be sure to tell your clients the potential and future of your brand. You should always end your brand story on a positive note and make the benefits clear for the client. Also, be sure that the customer understands exactly how your solution will solve their problem and make their life easier.
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