What the hell is a brand platform? Thinking of it in terms of the human body (‘brand anatomy’, get it?) is an easy way to help you get all the bits straight.
In the same way a healthy body functions best when all its parts work together in harmony, so too does your brand. Each of these components can be quite involved, but here’s a snapshot to get you started.
Your brain controls your body and your strategy is the plan that controls your business. It’s your smarts and expertise – the plan of action that drives the inner workings of your business.
It also sets the foundation for external communications. It’ll probably take a bit of time to get your brand strategy right. It requires careful research, analysis and planning.
This is what your brand stands for. It’s what drives your purpose and will help define your conduct and personality. Your brand values tell who you are and informs how you work. If you get them right, they become your standards of behaviour.
At Out of the Square we have four brand values: stop, collaborate and listen; own that shit; up the ante; and laugh, play, inspire. We review them periodically and make sure everybody’s onboard.
What does your business want to accomplish? This is your big business goal that will guide you into the future. It’s the driving force behind everything your company does so it should be aspirational.
Your vision is quite likely a far off goal that you may never reach. But it makes a statement about the passions of your company. Your employees and customers alike will have something to inspire them.
Your logo design is one of the main visual elements of your brand. Just like your face, it helps people recognise you. The perfect logo should be distinctive and memorable. It represents your business, so its style should be appropriate.
It also needs to be practical to apply across all your collateral. It should look just as good in every application from your website favicon to the signage on the roof of your head office or the tail of your corporate jet. Or at least the side of the work truck.
Another important part of your brand’s visual elements, this is the brand image that supports your logo. It’s what visually sets you apart from your competitors and should make a good first impression on your target market.
This includes stuff like your colour palette, design elements, typography and other styling components. If you’re consistent in your application, you’ll build a strong presence.
This is what your brand sounds like when you communicate, either written or verbally. Your voice should always stay the same, but your tone may change depending on your message or your audience.
Again, consistency is key. You’ll probably want to create some guidelines so all of your employees can communicate with customers in a unified way.
Where does your brand stand in the competitive marketplace? How is it unique and different? Getting your brand positioning right helps you stand apart from your competitors and gives you an edge.
Effective brand positioning will help you make better business decisions when you have a clear vision and strategy. It can improve staff morale when everyone shares the same values and walks their talk. And when customers can identify your brand values and they align to their own, it can create a faster connection and stronger customer relationship.
Ready to develop a strong brand platform? We’d love to help!