As a small business ourselves, we have felt the impact of lockdown on our brand plans and ways of working, and we know we are not alone in this.
So to help you focus on your planning and marketing strategy for 2021 (and beyond), here are our top five ways to approach brand housekeeping, giving you the chance to check-in and make sure everything is up to date and relevant, as we emerge from lockdown.
We hope these free resources below help you make sense of this new normal, but do get in touch if you would like to chat any of this through in person.
Finally, to be in with a chance of winning a month’s supply of biscuits (that’s a lot of biscuits), simply share a photo of your New Norma postcard using the #NewNorma and we’ll pick a winner at random*.
Don’t forget to follow us on social media too, for the latest (and to find out if you are the winner!).
1. Revisit branding, colour themes, templates
Brands evolve, and sometimes a quick refresh is all that is needed.
Things to consider:
Are you happy with your branding?
Does it communicate where you are as a brand now,
as opposed to when you started?
Is your logo suitable for all platforms?
Does it sit well on social media / websites / marketing materials?
Can you identify your brand colours?
Statistics suggest that brand recognition is increased by
80% when colours are used consistently across logos,
content, marketing materials, products and packaging.
Are all your marketing materials and channels consistent?
Now is the time to check everything is aligned.
Are there elements of your branding that could be updated?
If so, is it colour / format / font / logo modernisation?
2. Brand leverage
“If people believe they share values with a company,
they will stay loyal to the brand”
As Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz points out, customer loyalty goes hand in hand with aligned brand values, so this is a good opportunity to consider the values and mission that drives your company forward.
Not only will it focus you on growth / re-growth, when the time is right, but it is a good reminder of your positioning in the market.
Ultimately, how do you want to be remembered by customers and audiences?
Identify your brand values
- List all the values that apply to your business (see below for ideas)
- Now sort and shortlist them to 3-6 values which you feel to sit at the heart of your brand
- Write a few words about each one – how are these bought to life in everything you do?
Be clear on your vision
Now consider your brand vision. This paints a picture of the future of your brand. If it helps, answer these questions:
- Why do we exist?
- What do we offer?
- Where do we want to be in 5-10 years?
Finally, make sure that customers are clear on your values and vision. Don’t be afraid to bring these to life in the content that you put out, customers want to know more about brands, and the people who make them. The human element is key.
Natural | Honest | Respectful | Innovative | Trust | Creative | Flexibile | Passionate | Simplicity | Fun | Commercial | Transparency | Connected | Customer-focused | Courageous | Knowledgeable | Warm | Generous | Professional | Operational Excellence | Team-focused | Perfectionists | Sustainable | Conscious | Leaders | Stewardship | Integrity | Responsible | Collaborative | Diversity | Honest | Celebrate | Community
3. Social media content
Creating and planning content can often feel like time consuming work, and it is, but it is much easier when you are working to a plan or schedule. Now is the time to brainstorm ideas:
How has your current content performed?
Check any analytics and work out what content resonates best with your audience.
Consider your audience – who is your ideal customer?
Speak to them through your social media posts.
What questions would your ideal customer ask your business?
Compile a list of FAQ’s and consider content that answers these.
What are your customer pain points?
What problems can you solve, and how can you
Is it social?
Don’t forget that social media really works when you consider it as a community. Engage with other local businesses, comment, tag, like, have conversations. The more you engage and share, the more likely it is that others will do the same in return.
To help you To your social media, you can download our FREE Social Media Housekeeping sheet and Content Planning sheet.
4. Connections and engagement
Now is the time to be mindful of our communities and show support like never before.
If business is quieter, why not take some time to engage online with local companies – talk to the people behind the brands. Share content, ideas and consider future collaborations.
- Create local or topical communities, whether online or offline.
- Foster relationships. Get in touch with past clients to touch base, share contacts who might be able to support each other, networking happens in many different guises these days, and with social media, it’s even easier.
- Investigate local resources. We’ve seen the creation of a number of brilliant Facebook group communities focused on supporting individuals and businesses during this time. Engage with these groups and offer support where you can, even if in a small way.
5. Take time to learn
It’s easier than ever to tap into training materials. Upskill where you can, read books, listen to podcasts – it’s never too late to learn. And during a period of relative isolation, it’s important to keep inspired and motivated.
Here are our favourite resources for online learning:
Google Digital Garage
(free online video courses)
(you can upgrade for one month free, for access to a huge number of courses) https://www.linkedin.com/learning
(pay as little as £11.99 for a huge range of courses)
We hope these resources are helpful. If we can help with anything at all, we are just a call or email away – firstname.lastname@example.org
* Winner to be picked at random on 21st November 2021 and we will announce the winner on social media. The prize cannot be exchanged for monetary value or any other item. You must be over 18 to enter. Alchemy reserve the right to choose the biscuits (but we will consider special requests). Thank you for entering!