For many years we have seen an over importance placed on visual identity, what your brand looks like. While visual identity is obviously incredibly important, it is only one aspect of your brand and often comes at the price of sacrificing what your business says about itself – your verbal identity.
For over ten years we have championed the importance of verbal identity and that all good brand and marketing activity starts with a simple message built on the platform of a robust brand strategy.
Your verbal identity has the opportunity to concisely articulate who you are and what you stand for – giving your business a clear purpose that both internal and external audiences can aspire to. It also has the potential to capture the essence of your market and create a competitive advantage through a concise and engaging entry point to your businesses offer. Without it, you just have design without purpose.
An effective message also directly influences the visual execution of your strategy and how your brand and marketing campaign is brought to life through design. The combination of the two make your brand more relevant to the overall strategy and will perform more effectively.
Building a strong verbal identity can really transform how your brand performs but can be hard to do when you have a broad product/service offer and so much to say. We see so many businesses that struggle to prioritise their value and end up communicating everything because they’re nervous about selling themselves short. However, this can have a detrimental effect on their communication because it is overwhelming for their audience and they can’t see through the clutter to understand what the business stands for.
Here’s a few tips to get your started:
• keep it simple – your customers are short on time and over complicated messages will compromise their ability to understand what you do and what value you provide therefore putting them off finding out more about you
• be emotive – even in B2B communications, emotive messaging is more effective at engaging customer’s – we’re all people at the end of the day. Whether purchasing a can of coke or a fleet of forklift trucks, communicating to people with emotion increases engagement and propensity to purchase
• narrow your focus – don’t try to be everything to everyone, it won’t work
• define your position in the market – take time to reflect on your competition and how you are different. Can you take ownership of one particular space within your market or is there an opportunity to define a new space?
• think from your customer’s perspective – what problem do you solve? What challenge do you help them overcome? What do they really want/need from you and what does this mean they want you to tell them?