BUILDING A SUCCESSFUL BRAND
Every organization has a corporate image, whether it wants one or not. When properly designed and managed, the corporate image will accurately reflect the level of the organization’s commitment to quality, excellence and relationships with its various constituents – including current and potential customers, employees and future staff, competitors, partners, governing bodies, and the general public at large. Everything an organization does or does not do affects the perception of that organization and its performance, products, and services.
Corporate brand management needs to be an on-going, synergistic management tool rather than a one-time “corporate image exercise”, as currently practiced by most organizations. Its goal is to enable sustainable relationship advantages to be developed with key audiences.
Corporate brand comprises all of the visual, verbal and behavioral elements that make up the organization. The corporate image should be a dynamic actualization of the Chief Executive Officer’s Vision, integrated with the corporation’s mission, vision and strategic plan. Development and management of the corporate brand is one of the most potent tools available for senior executives to use in ensuring the viable execution of the corporate vision. The ultimate battleground for winning and maintaining relationships takes place in the minds, hearts, emotions, and perceptions of the target audiences. A corporation wants to deliver good quality, value, innovation, convenience, and accessibility with its brand. Building brand equity is like building a close friendship and requires a consistent relationship over time, with trust and an emotional connection supported by top management and the entire corporation.
The delivery of a successful brand is executed in core steps and if maintained and policed properly will ultimately form and keep those relationships. This can be achieved by determining and enforcing the following:
- Corporate Brand
- Brand Vision
- Brand Promise
- Brand Message
- Brand Personality
These brand components are delivered in part by the corporate identity. The corporate identity is the visual representation of the corporation and should not be confused with the corporate image. Part of the Corporate Identity is represented by a Graphic System which includes such components as logo, corporate colours, consistent fonts, consistent photos and graphic elements, etc. This aspect of Corporate Identity is explained in the Graphic Design section.
Successful Web Branding
To promote brand is to promote mood, colour, and feeling, and to do it quickly and repetedly. A web brand is one that exists primarily on the Internet and is concerned with helping people do things. It is first and foremost functional. Every time a reader succeeds in carrying out a task on the website, the brand’s reputation is enhanced. When a reader is frustrated, the brand’s reputation is diminished.
The following web brand tools are key:
- Accurate, well-written, relevent, and up-to-date content.
- Proper classification
- Ease of use and navigation
- Quick and accurate search/purchase processes
- Corporate Identity reflecting brand personality and consistency of graphic standards