One of the best ways to increase a company’s visibility and attract your target audience is to create a unique brand image that differs from many others in consumers’ minds. A positive brand image is essential for all the businesses, including a modern Vave platform and an old-fashioned supermarket chain because it will help change the audience’s attitude toward the product and influence their purchasing decisions.
What a Brand Image Is
Brand image is the perception of a brand by existing and potential customers, a set of beliefs, ideas and feelings associated with it. This image is created by the sum of all the experiences that customers have with the company: advertising, packaging, products, service and other touch points.
Brand Image Components
Brand image can be represented as a set of two concepts: brand identity and brand personality.
Identity is the visual representation of the brand: the logo, colors, typography and other elements. Brand personality is the set of human characteristics that the brand embodies: values, attitudes, special features of its personality.
Brand identity is created within the organization. A company, when entering the market, presents a brand identity to potential customers, expecting it to help build a successful brand image.
Sometimes the internally created identity matches the brand image, and other times the public perceives the company differently. The task of marketers is to synchronize these perceptions as much as possible.
How the Brand Image Is Created
To create a strong brand image, a company must first identify its brand and define its identity. The first step is market research: it helps know what the target audience values and what their expectations are. Based on the results, the organization can create a unique brand identity and personality that resonates with consumers.
Brand identity provides brand recognition. It manifests itself in visual and verbal communication and should be consistent across all touchpoints – packaging, promotional products, and social media. Working with identity, marketers shape the tone of communication – tone of voice – and key messages that reinforce brand identity.
Once the identity and personality are defined, the company must communicate this to its target audience through marketing channels and advertising.
How Should the Brand Image Look
A strong brand image sets a product apart from nearly identical competitors in the same market. For example, customers associate branded products with higher quality than retailer-branded products, even if the differences between them are minimal. Properly communicated brand values can shape the customer experience as much as the products themselves. To do this, for example, high-tech brands create products that convey symbols of innovation and status along with practical value.
Brand image can be measured. Surveys can help: They can be distributed not only to regular and new customers but also to competitors’ audiences. The results will help determine what is needed to launch a new product, dramatic changes in customer service or a new advertising campaign.
Why Work on the Brand Image
A positive brand image provides a company with great opportunities for growth:
- The brand image allows friendship and cooperation with other brands. A company with an attractive reputation is more trusted by others in the business. Partnering with them can increase market reach, including offline. Partnerships with larger brands can, in turn, increase brand image credibility.
- Increasing the number and effectiveness of referral mechanics. When customers see a positive brand image, they are more likely to recommend its services or products to family and friends.
- Confirming the company’s level of professionalism. A good brand image can be based on the quality of services and customer satisfaction. For example, if a company has a well-constructed returns policy, customers will be bolder to buy products, knowing that the company can professionally resolve any problems.
It may seem that the brand image can be largely controlled by branding tools. However, under the influence of external factors – specific trends, current events, evaluations of individual customers – the audience’s opinion of the brand can change. It’s necessary to strengthen a positive image all the time.
A strong brand image helps companies stand out from the competition and increase loyalty among potential and existing consumers. Brand image is especially important in competitive markets, where consumers have many options to choose from.
Consistency and integrity are key to creating a strong brand image. This means that all elements of identity and personality must be consistent across all points of contact with the audience, as must key messages and tone of voice.