Branding has become a topic of great interest to me lately. A few recent work activities followed by meeting some new branding experts/friends have brought the power of a brand into perspective. A brand is the sum of everything you know, think and feel about a product or service. It's the feeling you get when your favorite product's jingle is on the radio or TV. It's the specific look of the bullet points on the product feature list on the website. It's what assures and comforts us when we choose one product over another. Today's post features four pro tips for managing your brand online.
1. Your Brand is as Good as the Customers' Experience
New friend and brand expert Pat Dawson recently launched his website/brand consultancy with TheBrandChiropractor.com. Dawson and fellow branding experts blog about their observations of brands that convey a message far different than the version of the brand customers experience, both online and offline. For example, Dawson's most recent post outlines a difference in customer experiences across Rainbow Foods grocery stores in the Twin Cities and suggestions for how their owners could put their brand back "into alignment." Managing Your Brand Online Tip #1: Strive for alignment between customer expectations and customer experience.
2. The Power of a Brand with Power
More new friends include John Stucker and Devon Thomas Treadwell, founding principals of Pollywog, a Twin Cities naming and branding firm. Their patent-pending brand process helps you create a powerful brand that will stand out in an online landscape, cluttered by over 5.5 million worldwide brands. Managing Your Brand Online Tip #2: Create a brand that stands out and is easily understood and spread by word of mouth.
3. Let Your Customers Help Shape Your Brand
We recently tested a few visual design changes on our website at work with a few of our customers. We developed three different designs and then asked our customers to select five adjectives from a list of fifteen that best described the designs. We were then able to leverage the customers' feedback in our decision-making process with evidence supporting the path we selected. Managing Your Brand Online Tip #3: Let customers help make big branding decisions.
4. Use the Online Brand Management Tools
Conversations occur about you online whether you're listening or not. It's easy to mange your brand online with free tools and little time here and there. Check out this recent blog post about free online brand management tools you can use to stay on top of what's being said about your brand online. Managing Your Brand Online Tip #4: Use free and cheap tools to alert you when your brand is mentioned.
What tips do you have for managing your brand online? Have you seen a particularly memorable brand recently? Post a comment with your thoughts.