A brand is a company’s face to the world. Developing and maintaining the optimum brand image is fundamental to achieving a positive relationship with customers, and ultimately defines how an organisation is perceived by all its stakeholders. Creating a recognisable brand also acts as a company’s promise to adhere to a set of principles or ‘brand values’ that are clearly reflected across its products, services and initiatives.
“Ensuring that customers form a positive opinion of a company is essential to its ongoing success and profitability,” comments Christine Joyce, Managing Director, CJAM Group. “Creating the right brand image helps customers to understand instantly what the company stands for – its beliefs, characteristics, goals and vision. Communicating its identity with absolute clarity is a must for any ambitious business.”
In theory, a successful brand should deliver a clear message about the company’s identity and values, help to cement its credibility, connect with its audiences emotionally, encourage customers to become loyal to the brand, and of course, motivate them to make regular purchases. Originality is vital, and good branding should also help to differentiate the company from its competitors.
Apple’s brand is a great example to consider. The Apple logo is clean, elegant, and easily implemented. Smart branding has consistently allowed the company to communicate any changes in direction while continuing to build its reputation. The Apple brand image, displayed throughout its marketing, at trade shows and across all its packaging and products, is highly distinctive and conveys a particular promise: quality of design and ease of use.
“Companies are continually evolving their brand strategies in order to connect effectively with existing and prospective customers,” continues Joyce. “Conscious that today’s customers make purchasing decisions largely due to brand image rather than the intrinsic value of the product or service, clients often ask us how best to ensure their branding strategy is unique, optimistic and direct.”
CJAM recommends that companies should consider four key aspects when it comes to effective branding: researching the market to ensure originality, developing a unique, simple and striking company logo, creating a precise ‘mission statement’, and ensuring all imagery and wording is as timeless as possible. Standing the test of time, after all, is the ultimate proof of a brand’s performance.