5 Ways to Maintain Brand Consistency
Brand consistency is a practice of presenting brand messages in a way that is fully synchronized with your brand’s strategy, mission, and values.
Maintaining brand consistency is easier said than done, especially in the digital environment. So how do you make sure that your brand is presented in the best possible light, consistent with your identity and goals?
Read this guide to find out.
Why Brand Consistency is Important?
Without consistency, there is no brand - it is as simple as that. You can have millions of dollars in your marketing budget and an amazing, inspiring message, but if you don’t communicate it in a way that’s going to make this message stick around, you’ll be wasting your time and money.
Building a brand is more than just displaying a few ads and getting people to buy your product. Branding means getting people to associate your product or service with a positive feeling.
Take Nike, for example, one of the most powerful brands in the world that sells sports shoes and clothes. But when you hear the word Nike, you probably don’t think about shoes. You think about athleticism, inspiration, decisiveness in the face of challenge, embodied in its timeless logo and the slogan “Just do it”.
Nike has maintained impeccable brand consistency throughout the decades. They have always kept their focus on sports and athletes. They have been endorsed by hundreds of both amateur and professional and amateur athletes from all spheres of sport. But each ad and campaign have always maintained “Just do it” as its core.
Brand consistency thus helps you:
- Build awareness: ad campaigns framed within consistent messaging and visual framework take less time and work to build brand awareness.
- Develop trust: Brand consistency implies that this positive practice extends to the way you handle your business. If your messaging is consistent, you create an impression of a company that is self-confident, professional, and reliable.
- Differentiate your brand: Brand consistency will also help you differentiate your product or service from those of your competitors.
How to Maintain Brand Consistency
As we mentioned, all of this is easier said than done. Here are some tips on keeping your branding consistent. Some quickly come to mind, but some will surprise you.
1. Stick to what you do best
Branding has much to do with building expectations and living up to them. If you have a delivery service and your slogan revolves around speedy shipment, the customer experience has to align with that promise.
Brand consistency reflects in sticking to what you do best and communicating that promise throughout the entire marketing strategy. Your brand may be targeting several different market segments based on their gender, age, location, lifestyle, and preferences.
But even when your ads are tailored to different target audiences, the core branding message should remain the same in each of them. Whether you’re delivering the latest iPhone or a pair of fishing boots, the promise remains the same - it’s going to be at your door in no time!
2. Get personal
We already mentioned Nike and their famous slogan. “Just do it” is simply a call to be bold and decisive. It creates a psychological connection between the product, the branding message, and the customer. The end result is that the customer feels that wearing Nike shoes will make them bold and decisive. It doesn’t matter who is in the advertisement - Lebron James or a Freelancer. The message is universal, and at the same time, deeply personal.
Therefore, try to sell a feeling, rather than a product. Coca Cola brand is not about a sugary drink - it’s about a sense of friendship and belonging. IKEA's slogan is not about furniture. It’s about “the wonderful everyday”. Think about the way your product or service is making your customer’s lives happier and easier. Incorporate it into your branding message.
It may sound contradictory, but getting personal is a prerequisite to creating a universal message that speaks to every customer. And once you have a universal message, brand consistency comes naturally.
3. Consistent visuals
An average person needs to see your ad 10 times to remember your brand. If your ads contain different colors, messages, or faces, it will take much more than that.
In the early phases of brand building, it is of utmost importance not to experiment with your visuals. Your logo, font, color palette, and style of the ads should work in harmony and remain the same in all advertising channels.
Brand consistency ensures the effectiveness of your campaigns - but it will also save you a lot of money.
4. Fine-tune the frequency
Scientific studies have also shown that complex, expensive products require a larger number of exposures to build brand awareness and prompt a purchase. Brand consistency is thus closely intertwined with the frequency of your ads, sponsored content, etc.
So how do you make sure you create a consistent presence across several advertising channels without appearing too pushy? Google Ads and Facebook Ads both have specialized brand awareness campaigns.
With GoogleAds, you can choose specific websites or web pages that will display your campaigns. Facebook Ads, on the other hand, offer brand awareness optimization. It is designed to help you find the audiences most likely to recall your branding message. You can also set how often the same people will be exposed to your ad. Some considerations should be timing (holiday season, sales) and the customer’s stage at your sales funnel.
Make your environment work for you
With a vast display network for ads, sometimes it can be difficult to control where your ad could be displayed. While Google offers suggestions for campaign placement, it can hardly cover all the perfect opportunities.
Tools like Website Categorization API can easily respond to that challenge. Using this tool, you can find perfect media placements and monitor references to your brand in unwanted categories. What makes website categorization so effective is the way it analyzes web content.
Website Categorization API was developed from the most reputable cyber intelligence database, Whoisxmlapi. We are one of the top go-to places for checking domain credentials and security. You can check it out here.
So how can website categorization help you maintain brand consistency? By analyzing web content on three levels:
- Testing website response during the crawling session
- Analyzing website content and keywords based on natural language processing
- Verifying the results through human supervision
After careful analysis, websites are assigned to 1-3 out of 25 different categories. You can easily set which combinations are a perfect match for your brand placement. At the same time, you can easily discard websites or pages whose context is not aligned with your branding message.
Although brand awareness does seem like an abstract goal compared to regular clicks and sales, its power pays off ten-fold in terms of customer retention and development of your business.
Maintaining brand consistency as a prerequisite for building a strong brand is an endeavor that is worthy of your time and investment. While nothing can replace creativity and consistent approach, the right tools can help you make the best of them - so don’t hesitate to use them. Click here to try today!