It’s no secret I’m a big fan of consistent branding. In fact, I dedicated an entire post to the topic that you can read here.
However, I think there’s a focus in the digital space, specifically with service businesses that are selling their expertise, on making sure you focus efforts on marketing. More specifically, marketing on a consistent basis.
While I definitely believe in the value of content marketing, I think there’s a very distinct difference between consistent marketing when you have a consistent brand, and showing up on a regular basis with absolutely no brand clarity.
A consistent brand means sharing the same message on all your digital platforms. It means having the same brand voice and personality regardless of where someone experiences you. While there are various tools that help you accomplish a consistent brand – like a brand message, a style guide, a positioning statement or a brand strategy – that are created over time, they’re all leading to the same goal: communicating your brand in a consistent and cohesive way.
On the flip side, consistent marketing is the frequency at which you show up at the various touch points someone may have with your brand. Things like writing a weekly blog post, sharing a video every other Monday or sending out a newsletter to your list on the first Friday.
So, given that, the next logical question is, ‘what should you focus your efforts on?’ Because of course you have limited time, so should you spend said resources on your marketing efforts, ensuring that you get content/ads/networking/etc. turned around on a consistent basis OR should you spend your precious time honing in on your brand?
Because Witt and Company is a brand strategy and design studio, I think you know where I’m going with this not-so-rhetorical question. 🙂
Kidding aside, my honest-to-goodness, hand-on-the-heart, true answer is this: Brand consistency matters more than consistent marketing. If your brand message isn’t cohesive, it is absolutely counterintuitive (and I might even go so far as to say a complete waste of your time) to focus your attention on consistent marketing.
It’s a strong statement, I know – but hear me out.
Let’s first bring it back to the basics: A brand is how someone thinks, feels and acts in relation to your business. Brand elements – everything from your brand voice to brand position to brand message to logo to colors – help create a strong brand that has the power to influence.
So given that, you hopefully can start to understand the importance brand has on your business.
Circling back to why consistent branding ranks higher than consistent marketing: When you don’t get clear on your brand FIRST, your marketing efforts will not have any intentionality or strategy behind them. And more often than not, you wind up in a never ending experiment phase. Or worse, you work your ass off, trying to show up everywhere, only to come up short, again and again.
Consistent branding builds recognition, trust and community. As a service provider, you know how important it is to have a community of raving fans, people who trust you and the ability to build a recognizable business.
So, if you aren’t consistent, how do you expect people to connect with you?
Let’s look at two examples:
Person A shows up every once in awhile on Instagram, she posts to her blog when inspiration strikes and she might hop on a Facebook Live when she has something she just has to share. But, each and every time she shares, she talks about the same thing. She has her brand message nailed down and she keeps coming back to it. Everything leads to her core beliefs and she doesn’t waver. You know exactly when she shares something on Instagram because you know her brand.
Conversely, Person B posts every day on Instagram, shares a blog post every Monday, releases a YouTube video every Wednesday and sends a newsletter to her list every Saturday morning. Except, some days she talks about her favorite fitness regimen, some days she shares mindset work and other days she talks about her various services… except you aren’t sure what that is because it changes often. She stays top of mind because she consistently shows up, but you aren’t sure what she stands for or what to connect with because she isn’t consistent.
Of course, in a perfect world, you do both consistent branding and consistent marketing. However, that might not be the case for you. Which brings me back to the original point: if you’re marketing efforts aren’t driving results, it’s probably because you aren’t consistent on your branding. And you’re not consistent with your branding because you aren’t clear on your brand.
When you have clarity around what your brand is, you set yourself up for success and growth. You are able to come back to your brand foundation again and again – it’s the home base, regardless of where your marketing efforts are.
Ready to get clear on your brand? Oh, I’m so glad you asked!
Start with this post all about building a strong brand as a new business owner. And then, if you’re ready to get an outside perspective, grab my services guide or sign up for a two-hour brand consultation!
Searching for the four foundational elements to get clear on your brand’s communication plan? Pick up a Brand Strategy Workbook here.
Happy branding 🙂
All my best,
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