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Say what? Why consistency is important for branding

It takes an incredible amount of self-discipline to stay consistent with your brand. Maybe it’s a new season, a new product line, new leadership or even a new employee with fresh ideas—but there always seems to be something (or someone) ready to pull focus away from your brand. And while agility is celebrated in many aspects of the business world today, the real winners know to stay laser-focused on consistently reinforcing their brand.

Consistency builds trust

A reliable brand is consistently represented across all customer touchpoints. This means a fanatical, cult-like loyalty to brand standards. Of course, this includes strict adherence to the color palette and fonts used in every single thing associated with the business, from business cards and the web site to premium items and invoices. This consistency builds trust, and assures customers they will be provided with a consistently good experience every time they interact with the brand—and even when they don’t.

For example: Raymond Jackson, CEO of First Image and commercial cleaner who wears a suit every day, understands the value of consistently reinforcing a brand. His brand is professionalism, and he wants to instill confidence that his work will be done professionally every time. The first time Raymond showed up in a suit, customers may have thought he was just trying to make a good first impression. However, after seeing Raymond in a suit every day, it quickly became obvious he consistently goes the extra mile to take professionalism seriously. In fact, customers became confident Raymond was wearing a suit and taking his job seriously even when they didn’t see him. And when his name comes up in conversation, people confidently refer to Raymond as the professional commercial cleaner who wears a suit every day, knowing he consistently delivers. And as Jeff Bezos is often quoted, “Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.” That can only be accomplished through consistency.

Dependability, trust and branding go hand in hand (in hand)

Raymond Jackson represented his own personal brand, but this approach holds true in all aspects of businesses of all sizes. While marketing executives are charged with being stewards of the brand, the brand promise needs to be consistently fulfilled by all aspects of the company. A consistently good customer experience builds brand loyalty and trust. On the other hand, erratic experiences create distrust, and even though some touchpoints might be good, the risks associated with engaging the brand outweigh the benefits.

No matter what the organization’s size, it’s typical for multiple teams to become focused on their singular processes. Even departments within mid-size manufacturing entities can have drastically different opinions and priorities when it comes to representing the business. Bringing together a cross-functional team to align on the brand promise and how each department can deliver will build dependability, trust, superior customer service and increase the value of your most valuable intangible asset: the brand.

The halo effect of a good brand

Another benefit of being loyal stewards of the brand is reduced risk when introducing new product lines. This “halo effect” describes consumer’s favoritism of a new line of products based on positive previous experiences with other products made by the same manufacturer.

The allure of “the next shiny new thing” wears off quickly when it has no brand equity. Let’s say a trusted manufacturer with decades of experience introduces a new product line. The new offering is cutting edge, and the manufacturer wants a radically new brand identity that reflects the new product line, a drastic departure from its current brand identity. But the allure of the shiny new object wears off quickly without the trusted brand endorsing the new product line. Standing alone, the new product line is weak and unproven.

This could have been avoided by aligning the new product offering within the hierarchy of brands instead of starting from scratch and throwing away all the equity the established brand has to offer.

id8 helps companies create and establish successful brands, including valuable advice on how everyone in the organization can stand behind it. Contact us today to begin creating consistency with your brand.