What drives consumers to become drawn to and remain loyal to a brand?
Generally speaking, Brand Experience is not channel focused or specific. When employed in a marketing strategy, the objectives are determined first and then we implement creative solutions to achieve those objectives. We don’t focus on a single channel or application. Instead, we use all media outlets to reach our goals. This can include digital marketing, branding, logo design, and anything else that can be dreamed up. In fact, it’s not the channels, media, or goals that matter at all, it is the creation of a brand’s story — and that story should be told with passion, emotion, and most importantly, be authentic. Look at some of the world’s most loyal brands like Nike, Dunkin and Starbucks, Harley Davidson, Jimmy Buffet, and Jeep. They are not really selling a product, they are exhibiting an experience, a lifestyle.
In the marketing world, we are all acutely aware of the importance of the analytics that provides a baseline and insight into performance and growth. However, we cannot allow these tools to drive Brand Experience. It’s much more enigmatic and those that have discovered how it and why it works are gaining loyal, long-term customers and brand enthusiasts who want to be a part of the journey, regardless of their need for a particular product or service.
The “Strategy” of Brand Experience
Because it is objective rather than channel driven, Brand Experience “strategy” doesn’t really exist. It’s difficult to segment, outline, and plan in a traditional way, but there is still a direction and a vague application of a traditional marketing toolset.
The success of Brand Experience isn’t measured in clicks, sales, and CTA responses. It’s a long-term process of gaining loyal customers through relatable, emotive storytelling. “Success” will be vaguer and perhaps less measurable, but it will produce a brand loyal customer base. An increase in positive engagement to social media content and a visceral reaction to images, logos, and written content are part of the complex measure of Brand Experience. Ultimately, success will be felt over time with business growth and the strong foundation of active, supportive, and engaged customers who also feel. In this instance, for each of these consumers, your brand evokes warm, heartfelt emotions.
How you accomplish this will be a unique and individual process for each brand. It will involve some out-of-the-box thinking and creative input to produce the necessary logos, digital marketing, print marketing, influencers, and anything else in the complete marketing plan. Implementation begins with broad strokes, and over time a finer brush can be used to paint most successful platforms in more detail. This will be where you will shift your focus and concentrate your efforts on what is working and refine your audience. Essentially, your Brand Experience will not only shape your brand’s story and direction but will offer a guide for your more targeted marketing efforts.
Tell Your Brand’s Story
In short, what seems to be a vague and unscientific take on branding serves multiple purposes. Keep in mind the most important aspects of its implementation: creativity, emotion, and story. Expending the time and effort on a strong Brand Experience positively influences the direction of your business, provides a loyal customer base, and contributes to the growth and success of a comprehensive marketing strategy.
In today’s world, longevity is difficult to come by and consumers are demanding richer, more connected relationships that serve a purpose, not just grabbing ahold of their wallets. By recognizing and utilizing the Brand Experience, you ensure that your business will remain in the hearts and minds of your target audience for years to come.
by Andrew Paradysz
VP Business Development