Similar with confidence in other areas of our life, like career, skills, playing the mandolin or relationships for example, Brand Confidence is definitely not something that comes over night. It takes patience, direction, dedication and a constant plugging away at it.
With so much contradictory information around the web, it can be a little bit paralyzing knowing which direction to take and – most importantly – doing so with absolute CONFIDENCE.
However, there are few steps you can take to ensure that you are on the right path. Are you ready to take notes?
1. AUTHENTICITY & TRANSPARENCY
I’ve seen a lot of brands hearing buzzwords and vaguely stumbling across a trend and feeling the need to immediately integrate it into their brand and strategy. Unfortunately many times that happens without a true alignment with the company’s core.
We all have seen hundreds of articles and pages over using words like “innovation”, “cutting edge”, “growth hacking”, the older “rockstar designer” (which I totally am, btw ;)) and dare I say it… “millennials”.
It’s all good if you truly are involved knee deep into those subjects. However, if your website has been updated last five years ago and you try to sell future web technologies, or if your Instagram feed is a mess of blurry and poorly lit pictures of dumpsters (but why?) and your dog but you try to sell social media marketing services to your clients, maybe you should align with your scope first.
It’s absolutely OK if you do not follow all the latest trends or if you want to stick to your tried and tested practices. Not all brands need to move at the same speed. BUT if you try to sell something you are not, people are immediately going to smell something fishy and walk away.
Trying to be everything for everybody, or conform only because everybody else is doing it will only lead to failure. Or “one hit wonder” syndrome. Being confident in your brand means not being afraid to rock the boat, and putting a spot light on what makes you unique!
Let’s be honest: what feels better than knowing you are 100% yourself and loved for it?
Don’t know where to start? Please help me find my authentic brand voice!
2. BRAND AWARENESS
Brand awareness can be achieved in many ways, some more subtle (like for example placing a logo or detail on a product in an obscure area) and some very obvious (for example: leave behinds – like pens or notepads -, advertisements, press releases, social media campaigns or simply covering the city in flyers).
You can have absolutely amazing products or offer top notch services, but if you cannot reach lots of potential buyers and ultimately turn them into fans and customers, you might feel like what you are doing or making is no good. Your confidence suffers.
A lot of people give up on following their dreams because of a skewed perception that they are no good and there’s no point in keep trying, when in reality they only need to adjust a few points in their approach, instead of throwing away the whole concept.
I’ve been there, done that! For a lot of years I’ve been plagued with the feeling that “well, maybe I am just not that talented”, “maybe I am not cut out to be in this role”, “I could never compete with all these other giants”, “I can’t do this, I’m just one person”. But you know what? That’s BAD attitude. And I don’t mean “bad” as in Michael Jackson’s “I’m bad, I’m bad, I’m really really bad”… I mean, you need to slap yourself, stop being a coward and get back in the saddle “bad”.
Need some help creating and strategy and designing assets for your next campaign? I can help you with that! Let’s get some new eyeballs on your brand.
3. FLAWLESS USER EXPERIENCE
A common misconception is that user experience is only tied to your website, when the reality is that good user experience bleeds into all areas, like customer service, packaging, shipping or gifts.
Of course, the main user experience is related to how well your website functions, how clearly is your message conveyed to your visitors, how you use images and graphic assets to tell a story, how outdated or current your visual design is, and how easy it is for people to find what they are looking for in a painless way.
Market research goes into this pile as well, because the world keeps evolving and with it new needs and desires emerge. So if you do not make an effort to learn what is going on and tailor your products or services to what people, fans and AI’s (hey, give them a chance!) are asking for, it’s very easy to become forgotten and obsolete.
Make sure you never leave any detail to chance and ask your visitors for feedback and suggestions on a regular basis, whether through personalized emails, polls or social media groups.
Have anything to add? I would love to hear your thoughts!
Andreea or Kay (or Klangwelt by her artist name) is a Creative Director and Visual Designer creating outstanding and effective branding identities for luxury, lifestyle, fashion and culture brands. Passionate about all things art and design. Also a stylist and fashion blogger at Style Unsettled. Follow her!