Modern brands are more accessible than ever. This level of exposure and transparency can be a double-edged sword: your brand message can reach customers easily, but every public facing marketing decision you make will remain on the internet for a long, long time.
For this and many other reasons, it is important to thoughtfully curate your brand message before putting anything out into the public. Once that message has been formulated, it is equally important to remain consistent and drive that message home.
With this in mind, today we will define brand message, some of the ways to formulate an effective brand message, the importance of a consistent brand message, and finally how brand message works hand-in-hand with overall digital marketing strategy.
What is a Brand Message?
To illustrate a powerful brand message, let’s examine a well-known brand message: BMW, the ultimate driving machine.
BMW is a well-known car company which has existed for over 100 years. A company that started as an aircraft engine manufacturer is now synonymous with luxury, performance vehicles. The slogan, the ultimate driving machine perfectly encapsulates BMW’s brand message.
But a catchy slogan isn’t enough. To make a brand message stick, it must permeate all marketing material. BMW carefully curates their brand message and their brand image to convey luxury, power, performance, and the ultimate driving machine.
How to Formulate a Strong Brand Message
So how can you develop a strong brand message for your product? Here are some high level tips to get started when deciding on a brand message:
Understand what makes your product special.What is your product or brand’s unique selling proposition (USP)? BMW offers a mix of technological advancement, luxury, and performance. Hence, the ultimate driving machine. Your brand message should convey what makes your product or service desirable.
Understand your customers’ need-states. There is a big difference between making a case for a product’s usefulness and actually selling that product. Use customer data analysis to understand what your key demographics are looking for and seek to meet those needs.
Brand message should mesh with brand identity and brand personality. Nothing exists in a vacuum. If your brand is about energy and youthfulness, your brand message must convey this as well. Brand message, brand identity, and brand personality are all links in the same chain.
Consistent, Clear Brand Messaging
Now that you have curated a strong brand message, the key is sticking to the script. Customers will become familiar with your brand message quickly, and may react negatively to any sudden shifts in tone or message.
Brand message consistency builds trust. Customers like to know what they are getting when they use your products and/or services. Nobody expects Walmart to be a luxury experience and nobody expects to walk out of Tiffany & Co. with a cheap pair of earrings.
Once your brand messaging is out in the world, it is all about consistency, repetition, and making small adjustments over time to meet market shifts. Re-branding can certainly be accomplished if and when that becomes a necessary choice, but inconsistent brand messaging can alienate your customers.
Brand Message and Digital Marketing Strategy
Brand messaging should remain at the heart of your digital marketing strategy. Let’s look at another famous brand message to examine this further: Nike’s just do it.
Despite being one of the most famous brand messages in modern history, the actual words “just do it” seldom appear in Nike’s digital marketing materials. Yet every single tv commercial, social media ad, and product conveys this message.
Nike’s branding is so strong after such a long period of time that we already know the slogan. We know that Nike is about performance, high quality products, energy, etc. Even the bold and energetic design of nike.com conveys the just do it mindset.
For less established brands, getting to this stage may take time. Language in public facing digital marketing materials should use repetitive language and convey a consistent message.
Once that message has taken root, digital marketing strategies may not need to specifically reference that language as much, but the campaign should always feel like it is a natural extension of your brand message.
Brand Strategy with Clock Tower Insight
Clock Tower Insight helps our clients to build their brands through any means necessary. We believe in using cutting edge research to deliver unparalleled insight and understanding into today’s rapidly changing marketplace.
With over 15 years of dedicated experience, our marketing insight has helped organizations including Belle Tire, Nielsen, Orbitz, and Kraft Foods.