As a business, there needs to be some focus on branding. What is branding? To me, it means that you want to ensure that your customers know who you are and what you stand for. But most importantly, that you know, and are clear with your internal audience about, who you are and what you stand for.
I’ve been lucky to be a part of organizations who have put a focus on this and those who have not, and have seen how those two scenarios differ. Those who put a focus on branding knew what needed to happen in order to get the correct message out to their key audience(s). Those things were:
- Internal brand guidelines to ensure that the internal audience knows what the brand stands for
- Dedicating resources to ensuring that your brand is communicating the appropriate messages, in the appropriate ways, to its key audience(s)
- Dedicating resources to ensuring a consistent brand look & how the brand is presented to its key audience(s)
- Discussing branding and marketing as part of the overall business’ success
- Allowing the marketing, or branding, department to be the holder of how the brand is presented and being the brand police
You can image how successful those efforts were. When branding and marketing was a part of all initiatives, it made the messaging consistent, it helped ensure that internally everyone was on the same page, and that the key audience(s) felt like the brand had its best interests in mind.
But what happens when marketing efforts are disjointed, or forced in to saying yes to things and not being a part of the greater picture? You end up being left without branding. Your brand might say one thing internally, but when there isn’t a key group of people in charge of being the brand police, you get a lot of different cooks in the kitchen and you put out a very disjointed message to your key audience(s).
Don’t let the second scenario happen to you. Become your brands champion. Fight for it internally first, and begin to make strides externally with a focus on your website, SEO, social, tradeshows, brochures, etc. Any and all communications efforts should be consistent.
P.S. Here is a recent article from emarketer titled: B2Bs Struggle to Integrate Digital Communications