Both small businesses and large corporations alike can benefit from making consistency an everyday goal in its marketing efforts, both offline and online. You might think that consistency is equivalent to monotonous routine and therefore it spells one word: B-O-R-I-N-G. Sorry to say, but you’re wrong! Consistency is key and it doesn’t have to mean what you’re doing is boring. It’s all about how it’s delivered.
Branding is made up of three central components: the mission, vision, and values of the company. These are most often established in the early stages of business development, making it easier to develop and perfect a brand. But a brand is much more than a logo; it includes the tone, style, voice, and overall personality of a company. This is where consistency really comes into play.
What it means to be consistent and why it’s important
Being consistent involves both online and offline marketing strategies and these should be very much intertwined. Producing relevant information to your audience and relating to them on a more human level help to build trust and loyalty. The words you and your team write or say, as well as the actions you take should spark a desire for your audience to connect and engage with you. Remember that they are taking the time to invest in your brand, so it is imperative that you take the time to reciprocate.
Tips to ensure consistency
- Know your audience and how to relate to them. This goes beyond basic demographics. You should know why it is they are interested in engaging with you. Can you solve a problem for them or bring value to their business? Getting to know your audience can be as simple as asking your customers and clients questions about themselves, their business, and/or how they perceive your business. Remember that you may have more than one audience to engage with and your strategies may overlap. The way you treat, speak, and engage with each audience must be constant and relevant on a personal level.
- Know where you are and where you want to be. You already have your mission, vision, and values set, but there’s more to figure out. What is your company already known for? What do you want to be known for? Create content that fits your audience’s perception of you. For example, if you’re perceived as edgy, be sure to use edgy and daring language and imagery. Push the envelope! If you’re in the process of re-branding, though, knowing how your audience perceives you is still important. This will help you decide how you want to be perceived. Just remember to perpetuate your ideal perception by being consistent.
- Create a calendar for your media. This can include what topics will be regularly discussed on your social media channels, when your company newsletter will be send out, or even when you’ll be mailing out promotional material. This helps your team develop a rhythm and become experts in coming up with the necessary content and to complete tasks in a timely manner. In addition, it will help your customers and clients to unknowingly develop expectations and retain loyalty when your team consistently delivers.
- Create a set of guidelines (or “rulebook”) that is distributed company-wide or at least throughout the marketing and PR departments. This “rulebook” should contain a basic set of standards, including language and grammar, colors, fonts, and images that can be used. These simple components are the basis with which your audience identifies your brand.
Know that your brand is going to grow and evolve. This should be a consistent journey, much like your strategies. Sometimes your customers and clients will “grow out” of you and they may or may not let you know this. If it’s time for a transition, it can be done, but re-branding should be done slowly and of course, remain consistent. Your audience will be with you along the way, so don’t leave them behind!