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Online Branding-Elements of a Successful Brand


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Information about what goes into a successful brand strategy, naming conventions for your brand, and how to bring the brand to life online. To learn more, visit

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Online Branding-Elements of a Successful Brand

  1. 1. <ul><li>Online Branding </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>Frank R. Schab
  2. 2. <ul><li>The knowledge, perceptions and feelings associated with something that has been given an identity (e.g., a name, look & feel) </li></ul><ul><li>So, a brand can be a… </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Product Company Currency </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Service Group Activity </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Person Character Location </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Country Building etc. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Differentiate from competitors </li></ul><ul><li>Create preference for your offering </li></ul><ul><li>Convey quality/trust </li></ul><ul><li>Escape pressure to compete on price </li></ul><ul><li>Identify ownership </li></ul><ul><li>Prove authenticity </li></ul><ul><li>Build economic value </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Price of branded product versus price of unbranded equivalent </li></ul><ul><li>Future cash flows attributable to brand </li></ul><ul><li>Achievable premium in M&A </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Branding in the online environment follows the same fundamentals as in the offline world </li></ul><ul><li>However, there are a few additional considerations for implementing branding online. . . </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Opportunity assessment </li></ul><ul><li>Strategy development </li></ul><ul><li>Identity & messaging creation </li></ul><ul><li>Implementation tools </li></ul><ul><li>Measurement </li></ul>
  7. 7. Interview brand owners to assess brand perceptions, aspirations, strengths, weaknesses, barriers, etc and determine internal alignment Review existing/commission new customer insight research to determine needs/wants, brand perceptions, purchase behaviors, etc Understand market drivers & dynamics, examine trends that may impact brand Audit communications and performance of competitors
  8. 8. Develop the brand platform E X T E R N A L I N T E R N A L
  9. 9. Determine the perceptions to create around the brand that support the brand promise
  10. 10. Make sure strategy meets at least these three criteria
  11. 11. <ul><li>Name development </li></ul><ul><li>Identity creation </li></ul><ul><li>Tagline/messaging development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>consider message testing with target audience to ensure it is “on strategy” </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>Naming is hard! </li></ul><ul><li>Consider hiring a branding firm </li></ul><ul><li>Use repeated brainstorming sessions with people from different backgrounds </li></ul><ul><li>Liberally consult resources (thesaurus, mythology books, history books, etc) </li></ul><ul><li>Consider brand platform and brand perceptions </li></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>Consider types of names: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>descriptive coined/abstract </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>metaphorical acronym </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Evaluate candidates on key criteria: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>pronounceability implied meaning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>associations uniqueness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>positive clarity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>memorability protectable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>endurance internationality/cultural appropriateness </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Name more critical for online than offline </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>Categories of brand marks: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Literal to symbolic/abstract </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Name driven to image driven </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conceptually simple to conceptually complex </li></ul></ul><ul><li>No hard and fast rules exist </li></ul><ul><li>Basic criteria: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Meaningful to target audiences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Different from competition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Credible for the brand </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><li>Types of tag lines: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Descriptive (“On your side”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Command/imperative (“Invent”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provocative (“Got milk?”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Superlative (“The ultimate driving machine”) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Key criteria: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>clear & concise reflects brand strategy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>different/unique no negative associations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>credible for brand memorable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>protectable </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>In our experience, it’s valuable to have those who worked on the brand strategy develop a messaging architecture to ensure that final messaging is on strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Components of messaging architecture: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Primary & secondary conceptual (unrefined) messages to each key audience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ideal format and tonality for each conceptual message along with supporting information/data </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. <ul><li>Interactivity (hyperlinks, mix of words & video, short games/animations, podcasts, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Mini-funnel sites that allow a brand to “own” certain messages (questions, issues, phrases, etc.) by purchasing the message as a url and linking it to brand </li></ul><ul><li>Social media/marketing which enables a brand to facilitate a debate of interest to the brand and build networks of influencers </li></ul>The internet provides some new methods for brand building:
  18. 18. <ul><li>Use of Keyword Effectiveness Index (KEI) analysis to enhance the brand’s prominence </li></ul><ul><li>Web sites that are emotionally responsive through enhanced personalization/customization made possible by digital technology </li></ul>
  19. 19. <ul><li>online tools allow for ease of measurement </li></ul><ul><li>determine key metrics: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>financial targets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>new customers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>retention </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>awareness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>brand strength </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>changes in brand over time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>etc. </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. <ul><li>The fundamentals of online branding are the same as for offline branding </li></ul><ul><li>Online branding differs from offline branding in the following ways: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Communications online are faster and continuous (i.e., 24/7) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>You cede control of the brand message more quickly online, where customers will talk about your brand how they see fit </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accordingly, online brands are more interactive than offline brands and demand a different level of responsiveness online </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Online and offline branding should be considered in an integrated, strategic manner </li></ul>