15 May Good Housekeeping
The Importance of a consistent Brand
Sherpa is fortunate to be able to deal with clients of all different sizes and from all different types of industries. We often however come across businesses that are unintentionally harming their brand by trying to handle their marketing themselves, often including their own personal views into decisions that should be led by the brand.
In layman’s terms a brand is like a house, brands are upheld by the pillars necessary to support it. All brands are different and therefore require different pillars, but generally speaking these pillars are: the logo, the stylistic elements of the brand (fonts, icons etc.), the colours, and the tone in which the brand speaks to its audience. Many businesses are often too relaxed with the use of their corporate identity, deviating from it in terms of colour, font or layout. These small adjustments may seem harmless at first, but over time they damage each of the pillars, giving your audience the wrong impression of your brand, making it seem inconsistent, disorganised, and lacking focus, eventually making your house look dishevelled and unhospitable. Herewith the simplified and condensed Sherpa guide for good housekeeping:
- Brand consistency:
If we think of each employee as having a room in the house, we can say that all of the rooms must follow a certain design style – all the walls must be red, for example. Having a house where all the walls are red, sends out a definite message to your audience and distinguishes you from your competition -everyone will know that it’s the Sherpa house, as they associate red with the Sherpa brand. If everyone in the house decided to decorate their rooms differently, a mixed message will be sent to the business’ audience, making differentiation harder and your brand identity less prominent. If we follow the analogy that all Sherpa rooms are red, but you end up meeting with someone in a green room, does the room still belong to Sherpa? Immediately you damage your brands credibility, by disassociating the meeting you’re at, with your brand.
- Brand recognition
There’s a definitive link between brand recognition, and customer retention. People visit your house because you make them feel a certain way or offer a certain level of service. When people are happy with your offering, they associate this feeling with your house (brand). Therefore, logically, reinforcing, maintaining and looking after each of the pillars that keep your house standing should be top priority. If people enjoy sitting on Sherpa’s leather couches, why all of a sudden make them sit on a wooden stools? Consistency, reinforces the brand in the mind of your clients, audience, followers etc. deviation does the opposite. We need to allow our clients to feel one thing about our brands, as soon as they have mixed feelings, or are confused about our brand identity, they will begin to question the business relationship and consider moving in with someone who makes them feel the way they once did about your brand.
- Brand guidelines
Understanding the importance of consistency in branding is one thing, but how do we maintain this consistency? How can we ensure that our housekeeper, gardener and butler are all working towards a common brand identity? The simplest way is the creation of a brand identity guideline document that needs to be adhered to, no matter the situation. This will ensure that all the rooms in the house –no matter what their purpose- deliver a consistent brand experience and reinforce your brand identity to your clients.
Talk to Wayde to find out how to create and maintain brand consistency.