Maintaining Brand Consistency
For any company, in any industry, it is important to have integrity to your brand. Brand awareness and consistency is an important aspect in attempting to build a long-term, trusting relationship with customers new and old. Within a retail or physical commercial space this level of consistency of brand is vital in order to keep the flow of customers moving freely.
You might not be fully aware of it, but if you think about every time you enter the store of a brand that you fully recognise, there will be key indicators, features and characteristics that you instantly recognise. If any of these are slightly wrong, or just feel off, it can have a negative impact on your experience. It could even lead to you leaving the store and not making a purchase. For most people this can be a change in how the ordering system works, or the brand colours and logo have changed completely. In some cases it relates to a new layout of the store or a different type of packaging for a product you have bought regularly for years. Anything immediately unfamiliar can feel jarring to a tried and tested customer. This is because brand consistency is a vital aspect of the success of any company and brand they have created.
We all like familiarity. It is comforting to us, and that is why brand consistency is important. Of course, there will come a time when a certain product has become jaded and the packaging requires a change, or a brand logo or motto is dated and could do with freshening up. In these times, it is important that a company deals with things in a delicate manner, taking on board feedback from customers and branding experts in order to ensure a smooth transition without losing customers.
As the person responsible for brand consistency across a retail store environment or multiple locations of the same brand, what can you do to ensure there is consistency across the board and throughout multiple marketing and communicative platforms?
Creating clear and focused brand standards is a very good start. These standards are best created when the business is first starting, or prior to a brand new marketing strategy becomes public. What this ensures is that all of your employees can be provided with a clear and consistent brand strategy to follow. This encompasses all aspects of the business, from the logo and fonts used in all marketing literature and on store fronts, to colour schemes, store layouts, and even down to the processes you expect all sales staff to follow when in dialogue with potential customers.
A full, clear brand strategy is a way of bringing cohesiveness to an organisation at the beginning of its life. That way, when the company grows, the organisation can cope in terms of brand consistency. When a new store opens, the employees will be trained in the same way as the original store staff, the signage will be the same, the colour scheme the same, and the processes of daily tasks the same. Consistency is key to any company growth and success, and with clear brand strategy you can achieve this.