How Atma Nirbhar is your vocal for local brand strategy?
Vinay Babani, VP - Marketing, SRV Media, provides several helpful pointers to help marketers be Atma Nirbhar in organising, planning and executing their strategy for becoming vocal about their local brands and taking it to the next level.
Be it a company that is into products, services, or manufacturing, one has to agree that the cut-throat competition in every sector has made a clutter in the market. Thus, developing a strong brand is not an option anymore, but a mandate for organisations in India today. Brand building is as essential as resource productivity and utilisation for any company, especially in the post-COVID-19 world, where consumers’ trust in the brand will definitely play a very important role in the purchase cycle. Right from selling your product or services to winning a contract or tender, your brand’s recall plays a vital role in winning the consumers and growing your business.
Also read: Clarion call to vocal for local companies
So, to stand out from the crowd, companies need to be vocal for themselves and their products/services. This might sound a bit costly, complex, and needless to you because you would want to invest more funds and energy on developing your products, hiring resources, and upgrading your services. But trust the marketing experts when they say this – branding will not drain your funds and is not as complicated as people portray it to be. Building a strong brand will always give you more than you invest, you just have to be patient and believe that sabar ka phal meetha hi hota hai.
With the present Indian Government and Prime Minister Modi motivating us to promote our local brands and being vocal about them, it is foremost for us to understand every detailed step required to promote the local brands to the global level. Contrary to the popular credence, branding is not as complex as it looks. Here are few steps to help you chalk out a perfect brand identity & persona:
- Establishing a brand’s identity: To create a strong brand identity, start by making a brand manual/ guideline. To ensure synchronisation between your brand’s identity and collaterals throughout regardless of who is creating your designs, it is important to make a brand manual. Here’s a step-by-step guide:
Make a unique logo for your brand and trademark it. There are a lot of websites available on the Internet and freelance designers or professional creative agencies which will help you design the logo yourself.
Think about the fonts you will be using in your logo, ads, product labels, website, etc. Ideally, you should select two fonts, one primary and another secondary.
Finalise the colour palette which you will be using across all your branding collaterals.
Typography: While you will create powerful content for your brand, typography will make sure it will fit into the design. This plays a vital role in making your collateral stand out.
- Digital-first strategy: The nationwide lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis has made us notice the actual power of digital platforms. While more or less every medium to communicate with the customers was off the rack, digital platforms were the ones that helped brands sell or communicate with the customers. Brands having decent digital presence leveraged it to their benefit, here’s how to create your digital-first strategy:
Create your first website. Use the brand guideline you made for determining the designing components and put important/ essential content about your product/ service on the website. Make sure you are putting up content that is easily understood by a layman on every level and help them consider your product/ service for the purchase.
Activate social media platforms: Choose your platforms according to the industry you serve; for example, Instagram is important for hospitality, whereas for IT companies LinkedIn is mandatory. Make sure you keep your customers connected to you with social media profiles and keep them engaged by posting at least thrice in a week about your offers, happenings, your products/ services, etc.
Creating assets for digital promotions: Along with the website, you will also need assets like brochures, videos, VR, and AR which will help you engage with your customers, especially if you are serving in real estate, hospitality, education, and retail industries.
Set up a CRM: When you have offers and discounts coming up, how do you communicate the same to your consumers easily? Collect and use your customers’ database with a secure CRM. Nurture and upscale your existing customers and increase your loyalty percentage by promoting right offers through SMS, emails, and WhatsApp, but make sure you don’t irritate them by bombarding your campaigns.
- Narrate your story: Once your brand is ready with its online presence, start communicating by telling people the story behind your brand and what it stands for in the market. Remember, storytelling is engaging and will keep them hooked to your brand, but ‘salesy’ content will push them away.
- Reach out the right target group: Identify the audience that you want to target on the basis of demographics and interest/ affinity groups. Start using paid promotions on important platforms like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Google Ads. Consider this as an initial investment for gaining the customer base and defining your brand in the market. Track the ROI of your investment, this can be tracked in terms of inquiries, customers acquired or brand awareness/ recall built.
- Seek help from the marketing experts: While guidance materials like this article are available on the internet for everything, right from making a logo to building a website to activating your first ad campaign, a team of experts might be able to help you better. Why? Because they are professionals and understand branding better since they have been doing it for years for multiple brands.
- Look out for a marketing partner who can help you with technology, creativity, and performance-based ads campaigns, because coordinating between multiple marketing and technical agencies/ teams might thwart you at some point.