Brand personality, what is it? Everyone is promoting their business online but what are you doing to set your brand apart?
Most of the world is online
More than half of the global population is connected to the internet, whether to be present online or not is no longer an option for brands. The latest report from WeAreSocial estimates that around 4.5 billion people currently use the internet, which is a penetration rate of 60%.
Having an online presence helps a brand to maximize its business’ reach, therefore attracting as many customers as possible when paired with the right marketing strategy. Being online will not only help improve a brand’s reputation, it will also grow sales.
Your brand is shorthand for who you are and what you stand for
Before diving into how to make your brand grow its online presence and also online marketing, let us first break down what makes a brand. The simplest definition of a brand is what your company is known for. What are your values and customer promises? Forbes defines a brand as the reputation of a company, including the name and how people perceive its products and services. When people think about your brand, what is the first thing that comes to their mind?
Brand personality is your point of difference
Brands stand out not only by how they position themselves in the marketplace or by their presence online but also through how well they connect with customers through their ‘brand personality’.
For instance, Apple Inc. is well known worldwide and no matter where you go, if you put a picture of Apple’s silver Macintosh symbol in front of someone, they’ll immediately be familiar with the logo. Apple has a branding strategy that focuses on the emotions. The starting point of Apple brand personality is how the product makes you feel. The Apple brand personality is about lifestyle; imagination; liberty regained; innovation; passion; hopes, dreams and aspirations; and power-to-the-people through technology.
The Apple brand personality is also about simplicity and the removal of complexity from people’s lives; this starts from Apple stores, from how the staff dresses, the gadgets they use and how they address the customers. Apple focuses on being a really humanistic company with a heartfelt connection with its customers. Through these qualities, Apple is positioned as being extremely helpful to people (and businesses) as they strive to achieve their goals.
The Apple brand is not just intimate with its customers, it’s loved, and there is a real sense of community among users of its main product lines. Apple products have a price-premium but it is still a preference for the Mac community.
To understand the importance of Brand Personality, we have to therefore understand the meaning of Brand Personality. Think of it as someone who has an engaging personality, people will naturally be drawn to them. It’s a trait that makes us want to spend time with that person, and what makes them memorable for the right reasons. When it comes to your brand, personality works in the same way.
These are the distinctly human traits and qualities that a consumer perceives of a brand. They are consistent traits, evidenced throughout your entire brand; They are clear from the brand’s visual marketing, social media, product packaging, website copy, and any other facets of the branding.
The concept of a brand personality was made popular by Jennifer Aasker, who published a research article on the matter in the late 1990s. In her words, brand personality is the ‘symbolic self-expression function’ of a brand. In short, it’s how a brand wishes to be emotionally understood by its audience.
The same as people, a brand without any personality is boring, and it won’t appeal to many consumers. Therefore, if you can create a brand personality that positively resonates with your customers, then your brand is going to have that edge over your competitors.
How does brand personality add to your bottom line?
As we have now broken down what brand personality is, a great starting point in trying to establish this for your brand is to imagine that your brand is a human, ask yourself some these questions:
- How would others perceive your brand?
- Is your brand bubbly, friendly, dependable, reliable, serious, responsible, cheerful, youthful, edgy, fun, engaging etc.
- How would they dress?
- What age group would they be?
- What is their social class?
- How does your brand act around others? Are they quite serious and professional, or do they see themselves as a bit of a joker? Would they shake your hand or go straight in for a hug?
Brand personality is communicated through tone of voice, visuals, and even customer service policies of your company. Anything you do to inform your audience of the experience when they become your customer can benefit from conveying consistent personality traits. Your audience should feel like they’re talking to the same person, whether they’re scrolling through Instagram posts or reading your latest email marketing campaign. Companies with the most successful brands use every opportunity to remind customers of who they are.
Create an experience with your branding that compels people to interact with your business and enjoy the involvement.
Get your brand values right before you waste resources on promotion
Before you start spending time and money on promotions and advertising the brand, start by defining your brand personality, this will, in turn, allow clear measurement and evaluation of the effectiveness of the marketing efforts that have been expended on the brand, an invaluable method for future success and growth of the brand.
The personality of the brand is, after all, how you want your brand to behave. This being said, your marketing and branding strategies need to be compatible. This can help you to create a cohesive marketing plan that won’t meander from your desired goal.
Brand personality is essential for building a strong brand, creating loyal customers and diversifying from the competition. These associations and beliefs that the consumer holds about your brand will go some way in achieving brand equity which is the total value of the brand as a separable asset.
Marketing without brand personality is a surefire way to create problems. People enjoy interacting with brands they perceive as being valuable, honest, and superior in quality. In fact, 64% of consumers say that sharing values with a company is the main reason they maintain brand relationships. Basically, if you don’t focus on telling the story of your company through transparent marketing tactics you’ll end up attracting unqualified leads and prospects who have nothing in common with your organization.
Your brand personality needs to be as constant and recognized as your employee’s faces. The best brand stories lead audiences to feel like they’re part of a journey. Create an experience with your branding that compels people to interact with your business and enjoy the involvement.
Contact Outside The Square to find out how you can make your barnd personaility effective and enagaing.