When you can articulate the difference between you and your competitors and push your superiority to the customers, you are successfully standing out as a brand. Branding strategy requires unique value propositions. It requires you to compete on unique attributes still unserved by your competitors. However, there’s a basic blueprint that every brand relies on. Research any of the big guns out there and their disruptive branding strategy will be based on some basic tactics.
Today, we will slide down through 5 basic tactics to help marketing teams grow their brand identities.
1. Provide Value to Your Audience (show them what you can do)
The most significant and time-honored strategy is to provide value to your old, current, and even future potential customers. You already ooze class from design to presentation to packaging, but it means nothing without offering value to the customer. Start loyalty programs, offer rewards to your old customers with time, answer them on phone as well as on social media, and think more about them than eating on profits.
Most of the big brands don’t flaunt the flexibility to alter their high price tags. Your brand can stand out by approaching people with low price tags and dedicated customer service. Once people start flocking in more and you have an eminent name in the market, it’s easy to get desired prices for the quality.
Another way is through product innovation. When they say “killer application”, it means an innovative idea loved by everyone. For a brand, it comes from social listening. Customers who follow you can provide valuable feedback on your existing products. You can utilize it to offer custom products with a tagline such as: “On the high customer demand”.
2. Be Original
It’s a lose-lose situation when a million brands of a similar product as yours are already lying around the digital space (and consumers are pretty smart these days!).
Being distinctive can attract a bigger mob and if you’re original, you already stand out as a brand. For instance, a bottle of coca cola will differ than every other soda of every other manufacturer. They did not ask for a billion dollar company when they started but here we have a multi-national brand serving nations around the globe just because of their originality.
You do not have to be original just in your product. The visual data, the content, every area of your customer service and marketing should emit originality. Even an original product photograph angle can win you a potential customer.
3. Use User Generated Content (Leverage Testimonials)
Would you trust a random guy bragging about his expertise or instead a guy recommended by a number of different people?
Let the testimonials talk for you- Publish case studies of your customer handling and record the customer's voice. There is no better strategy than leveraging user-generated data. A brand stands out with long, genuine testimonials.
While we have every other, website jotted with crisper testimonials, you can go for long case studies, videos of customer experiences, and even publish their appreciation emails/ personal messages on social media. That is how many creative marketers create brands out of small businesses.
You should solicit customer opinions through social listening. Positive endorsements deserve a ‘Thank You’ message. To make it more genuine, locate the customer and ask for the permission to use their photograph and city name in your testimonial section.
4. Contribute To A Cause
It is important to win over the socially-conscious shoppers in this millennial era and what better way than contributing to a cause. Sincere intentions towards a cause can assist you to achieve a stand-out brand name.
A good contribution is a social responsibility of any business. If we go down to the benefits, well, it encourages shoppers to even switch their brand.
It is important to win over the socially-conscious shoppers in this millennial era and what better way than contributing to a cause. Sincere intentions towards a cause can assist you to achieve a stand-out brand name. A good contribution is a social responsibility of any business. If we go down to the benefits, well, it encourages shoppers to even switch their brand.
Moreover, it improves your corporate reputation, helps you conduct a positive social media communication, helps make more heart-warming customer relation, and most importantly it helps you cut through the noise to make your brand stand out.
While some brands have authentic causes, some turn it into a marketing strategy. And that's what a shopper or client perceives first hand. To avoid this common pitfall, display the contribution as a major part of your business success. Shoppers respond positively when they discover your initiative in assisting your profit charts.
5.) Use Strong Visuals
Spotify is the pioneer of gradient colors. Despite being a music streaming platform, the brand largely utilized the use of album arts. Users fell in love with their strong visuals and Spotify is an app standing tall.
Strong visuals are included in marketing packages of several market giants. Graphic innovation has been a key in emails, websites, and marketing campaigns. Utilize high-quality videos, images to retain customers but first understand your audience. The visuals are not for you, but for the shoppers.
There are certain elements you can work on to address visual branding.
Logo: It is not as easy as opening a site and inserting a name into it. Yeah, there are numerous websites offering you a similar service at a mere price. But do you want to be like everyone else, or stand out? Go through it repeatedly. Alter it until it appeals to you as a customer. The Tailor Brands logo maker provides a full solution for the logo design and branding requirements of any small business.
A consistent color palette in everything: Follow a theme. It is important that a brand follows a theme and use it in relief with all their product images (don’t you think of coca cola, when we talk about a brand with “red”).
Font choice: Font speak volumes about your business type. For instance, a serious business will never include Comic Sans in their product descriptions, but light-hearted and fun businesses might want to portray themselves with it. Use an expert on graphics and ask your mentors, customers about the end-results.
Image choice: Don’t confuse your audience. There are brands pushing irrelevant imagery on their website. Your images should address the audience as well as reflect your brand.
Whether you are a recent startup or an old player, making and maintaining a brand name requires you to stand out from the ever-growing crowd. A previously running business can initiate a rebranding campaign while startups can adjust to a brand-standard campaign execution.
Women in the workplace have always experienced a certain degree of discrimination from male colleagues, and according to new studies, it appears that it is becoming even more difficult for women to get acclimated to modern day work environments, in wake of the #MeToo Movement.
In a recent study conducted by LeanIn.org, in partnership with SurveyMonkey, 60% of male managers confessed to feeling uncomfortable engaging in social situations with women in and outside of the workplace. This includes interactions such as mentorships, meetings, and basic work activities. This statistic comes as a shocking 32% rise from 2018.
What appears the be the crux of the matter is that men are afraid of being accused of sexual harassment. While it is impossible to discredit this fear as incidents of wrongful accusations have taken place, the extent to which it has burgeoned is unacceptable. The #MeToo movement was never a movement against men, but an empowering opportunity for women to speak up about their experiences as victims of sexual harassment. Not only were women supporting one another in sharing to the public that these incidents do occur, and are often swept under the rug, but offered men insight into behaviors and conversations that are typically deemed unwelcomed and unwarranted.
Restricting interaction with women in the workplace is not a solution, but a mere attempt at deflecting from the core issue. Resorting to isolation and exclusion relays the message that if men can't treat women how they want, then they rather not deal with them at all. Educating both men and women on what behaviors are unacceptable while also creating a work environment where men and women are held accountable for their actions would be the ideal scenario. However, the impact of denying women opportunities of mentorship and productive one-on-one meetings hinders growth within their careers and professional networks.
Women, particularly women of color, have always had far fewer opportunities for mentorship which makes it impossible to achieve growth within their careers without them. If women are given limited opportunities to network in and outside of a work environment, then men must limit those opportunities amongst each other, as well. At the most basic level, men should be approaching female colleagues as they would approach their male colleagues. Striving to achieve gender equality within the workplace is essential towards creating a safer environment.
While restricted communication and interaction may diminish the possibility of men being wrongfully accused of sexual harassment, it creates a hostile
environment that perpetuates women-shaming and victim-blaming. Creating distance between men and women only prompts women to believe that male colleagues who avoid them will look away from or entirely discredit sexual harassment they experience from other men in the workplace. This creates an unsafe working environment for both parties where the problem at hand is not solved, but overlooked.
According to LeanIn's study, only 85% of women said they feel safe on the job, a 5% drop from 2018. In the report, Jillesa Gebhardt wrote, "Media coverage that is intended to hold aggressors accountable also seems to create a sense of threat, and people don't seem to feel like aggressors are held accountable." Unfortunately, only 16% of workers believed that harassers holding high positions are held accountable for their actions which inevitably puts victims in difficult, and quite possibly dangerous, situations. 50% of workers also believe that there are more repercussions for the victims than harassers when speaking up.
In a research poll conducted by Edison Research in 2018, 30% of women agreed that their employers did not handle harassment situations properly while 53% percent of men agreed that they did. Often times, male harassers hold a significant amount of power within their careers that gives them a sense of security and freedom to go forward with sexual misconduct. This can be seen in cases such as that of Harvey Weinstein, Bill Cosby and R. Kelly. Men in power seemingly have little to no fear that they will face punishment for their actions.
Source-Alex Brandon, AP
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook executive and founder of LeanIn.org., believes that in order for there to be positive changes within work environments, more women should be in higher positions. In an interview with CNBC's Julia Boorstin, Sandberg stated, "you know where the least sexual harassment is? Organizations that have more women in senior leadership roles. And so, we need to mentor women, we need to sponsor women, we need to have one-on-one conversations with them that get them promoted." Fortunately, the number of women in leadership positions are slowly increasing which means the prospect of gender equality and safer work environments are looking up.
Despite these concerning statistics, Sandberg does not believe that movements such as the Times Up and Me Too movements, have been responsible for the hardship women have been experiencing in the workplace. "I don't believe they've had negative implications. I believe they're overwhelmingly positive. Because half of women have been sexually harassed. But the thing is it is not enough. It is really important not to harass anyone. But that's pretty basic. We also need to not be ignored," she stated. While men may be feeling uncomfortable, putting an unrealistic amount of distance between themselves and female coworkers is more harmful to all parties than it is beneficial. Men cannot avoid working with women and vice versa. Creating such a hostile environment is also detrimental to any business as productivity and communication will significantly decrease.
The fear or being wrongfully accused of sexual harassment is a legitimate fear that deserves recognition and understanding. However, restricting interactions with women in the workplace is not a sensible solution as it can have negatively impact a woman's career. Companies are in need of proper training and resources to help both men and women understand what is appropriate workplace behavior. Refraining from physical interactions, commenting on physical appearance, making lewd or sexist jokes and inquiring about personal information are also beneficial steps towards respecting your colleagues' personal space. There is still much work to be done in order to create safe work environments, but with more and more women speaking up and taking on higher positions, women can feel safer and hopefully have less contributions to make to the #MeToo movement.