If you have a business, if you’ve interacted with customers, you have a brand. If you have worked with a branding agency, you have a defined brand that you control.
So, let’s say you have a defined brand – you know what your audience wants to hear, and how you are going to say it to them. You know what your marketing pieces should portray, and you have all of the brand components in place (logo, tag line, colors, typography, image style, heck you even have a few pieces developed!) Your brand is now a finely crafted business-marketing tool. So now what? You need to implement your brand.
Brand implementation is a necessary component of an effective marketing campaign, just as controlling your brand is a necessary component of a successful business. OK – so the firm you worked with to develop you brand has the right people to implement your brand, right? Not always. Companies may be compelled by a variety of factors to either implement their brand on their own, or hire another firm for brand implementation. Cost and poor implementation are two common reasons for companies that make these decisions. No matter how it is done, the solution that ultimately works best is the one that allows you to consistently, and effectively, implement your brand.
Effective brand implementation means consistent use of the established brand components and an understanding of the reasoning behind those components. Your logo is a specific color for a reason; your tag line (and possible variations on it) is worded that way for a reason; you display specific types of images for a reason; you provide specific information on your advertisements for a reason. When your brand was developed, these reasons were explored, confirmed, and established. Your company should have been provided with a branding standards guide to help ensure consistent use of these elements. This guide, and open communication with whoever is implementing your brand, is the key to effective brand implementation. Follow your standards, understand them, and allow them to evolve as your business grows.