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  • Writer's pictureHilary Young

Why Brand Strategy Is More Important Than Ever


Brand strategy is integral to business success


In all my years working as a brand strategist, I’ve never gotten so many notifications pop up on LinkedIn about companies looking to hire VPs of Brand Marketing. To me, this signifies a significant shift in how businesses are thinking about brand strategy, and it’s a great signpost for where the direction of the marketing industry is heading.


Unsurprisingly, a 2023 study from PWC found that 93% of customers factor brand trust into their purchasing decisions, which has left marketing departments holding the bag when it comes to protecting and expanding that sense of trust. Customers don’t just want to make a purchase, they want to know what your brand stands for and find it relatable.


But this also means that CMOs are now tasked with “shaping and communicating an authentic narrative that highlights sustainability and purpose, including the company’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategy,” which is no small undertaking. This is exactly why many corporations are now hunting for people who specialize in brand strategy.


Brand Strategy for Small Business


The PWC report also found that 90% of CMOs are focused on increasing communications about their brand’s purpose and values–both of which are integral aspects of a brand strategy.


For those businesses that can’t afford to bring on a CMO let alone a whole marketing department, budget shouldn’t be an excuse to avoid paying attention to brand strategy. Although it helps to have an expert walk you through the process of figuring out how to position your brand for success in the marketplace, it is possible to DIY your brand strategy by focusing on specific components.


#1: Define Your Mission, Vision & Values


At the core of every successful brand strategy lies a clear understanding of your brand's mission, vision, and values. These elements form the foundation upon which your brand's identity is built.


First up is your mission statement, which succinctly articulates the purpose and driving force behind your business. It should answer the fundamental question of "Why does your business exist?" This statement serves as a guiding light for your brand's actions and decisions, helping you stay true to your purpose.


The mission is directly tied into your vision for your brand, or the aspirational piece of what you are building. Of course, that’s also intimately tied to your brand values, which represent the principles and ethics that define your brand's character. They reflect what your brand stands for and believes in.


Why are these elements important? An audience that aligns with your mission and values are more likely to connect with and trust your brand.


#2: Figure Out Who Your Target Audience Is


Even though this piece is listed second, it’s probably the most important part of any brand strategy. Understanding your audience is a key component to knowing what you need to say and how you need to say it in order to connect with the right people.


A good brand strategy should focus less on trying to sell your product or services and more about how to demonstrate to your audience that you understand them, empathize with their struggles, and want to present clear solutions for making their lives better in some way. Without that clear picture of who exactly your ideal customers are and what they are thinking and feeling, it's challenging to tailor your messaging and offerings to their needs and preferences.


How can you do this? Break down your audience into distinct segments and build psychographic profiles for each. Psychographics are defined as “the qualitative methodology of studying consumers based on psychological characteristics and traits such as values, desires, goals, interests, and lifestyle choices.”


#3: Craft Strong Value Propositions


Your brand's value propositions are not just what sets you apart from the competition, but they are also the ways in which you show your audience how you will provide them with value when they engage with your brand.


Crafting compelling value propositions is crucial for brand positioning. Your brand positioning statement should concisely communicate what your brand does, who it caters to, and the unique benefits it offers. This statement is the essence of your brand's position in the market.


Feeling Stuck? Try My Brand Strategy Course


Putting in the time and effort into developing a robust brand strategy is always worth the investment. It simplifies your marketing efforts, fosters cohesive content creation, and enables you to communicate effectively with your target audience. In a world filled with noise and distractions, a well-defined brand strategy is the key to standing out, connecting with your audience, and building a lasting brand presence and identity.


If you’re struggling with how to bring all of the elements of a successful brand strategy together on your own, I would recommend taking my brand strategy course, which applies my proprietary approach to branding through bite-sized video lessons, worksheets and exercises, and encouraging emails to help you keep moving forward through the process. It’s the perfect solution for businesses on a budget and guarantees to whip your brand into shape!


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