If you’re wondering how to create or develop your business’s brand strategy, you can’t go far wrong by seeking brand insights that will give you a strong foundation to build on.
Brand insights combine factual data and information about your brand with a deep dive into the emotional experiences of your customers and other stakeholders when they interact with it.
These insights can help you to pinpoint key pieces of information about your business, products and services, such as:
- Understanding what drives customers to buy from you (how people want to feel rather than what they think – and how that relates to your business)
- How different audiences feel about different marketing and advertising methods
- How people perceive your brand origin and story
- The met and unmet needs of your customers
- Where the customer service experience works and where it doesn’t
- How your brand currently speaks and acts in the world and how different stakeholders perceive this
These are just a few examples of what brand insights can tell you. There is potential to explore every aspect of your business and use the knowledge you gain to create a robust brand identity and strategy.
How brand insights will benefit your business
It’s fair to say that, in life, the better you know yourself as a person, the more able you are to take care of yourself, connect with people who “get” you and confidently move towards your goals.
The same goes for your business’s brand.
The better you understand your brand through insights, the more you can nurture it, reach best-fit audiences and grow in a direction that feels right for your organisation. This kind of in-depth knowledge creates flow across a business and opens up new opportunities rather than making you feel like you constantly have to overcome obstacles.
With the right brand insights, you can identify:
- How to make your brand more recognisable to customers
- New markets and how to thrive within them
- Strengths to capitalise on
- Areas of the business that need support and development
- How to connect with your target audiences (what to say, when and how)
- Why your brand speaks and acts in a certain way
- Areas of resistance and how to address them
This will help you to develop a strong sense of where your business fits in, as well as how to stand out.
How brand insights can change a business from the inside out
It isn’t enough to look for brand insights about customer behaviour or your position in the marketplace. You have to reflect on what’s happening within your business too.
Your people and internal culture are all integral to your brand, so you need to understand how they see and interact with it, as well as what it means to them.
Once a business is up and running – or even when it’s in the development stage and in the hands of its founders – it’s easy to get caught up in the idea that “our business stands for x, y or z” without exploring whether that’s actually the case – or, certainly, whether customers perceive the business in that way.
In a more established business, staff can get set in their ways, saying things like “That’s just how things are done around here” or “the CEO says this is what our brand is about so that must be our brand identity”.
Brand insights can be a powerful way to either challenge the status quo or confirm that, yes, things are done in a certain way for the right reasons.
Another common challenge in businesses is when staff fall foul of the “curse of knowledge”, i.e. they become so familiar with procedures, products or services that they forget that customers or new employees, for example, don’t have the same level of knowledge and need to be met where they are.
Brand insights can throw a spotlight on this and make sure communication is as clear and targeted as possible at all levels of the organisation, both internally and externally. This can help to build brand loyalty and improve staff retention.
Exploring brand insights can crystallise what your business is about from the inside out. Staff end up with a unified vision to work from, which creates focus, purpose and meaning and diffuses potential sources of conflict.
Having a brand and internal culture that align is one of the most effective ways to future-proof your business, make it resilient and able to grow it in a direction that feels natural and authentic to everyone involved.
Brand insights boost creativity
It’s so much easier to create and respond to a brief when you know who you want to reach, why and what matters to them.
This is why strong insights into your brand can also act like touchpaper to your marketing creatives, igniting ideas for messaging, content and visuals that resonate with customers.
Here at Iconic, we’ve helped clients to smash their targets for launches in new regions by assessing existing brand awareness, giving them insights into the kind of marketing that will work for that location, as well as how they should focus their messaging.
When decisions are based on insights, you can tailor campaigns and messaging with confidence and reduce what you spend by directing your marketing budget where the insights show you’re likely to see the best ROI.
In their Cannes Lion 2021 keynote presentation, McKinsey & Company reported that businesses that integrate creativity, analytics and purpose deliver at least two times the growth of their peers. Brand insights are where these three meet.
Which insights to target
As we’ve seen, brand insights can be wide-ranging and cover every aspect of an organisation, inside and out. The challenge is being able to pinpoint which insights have the most value to your business and how they should inform your brand strategy.
Although this can be achieved in-house, this might be where you want to enlist an external agency with experience of bringing together the factual data and emotional experiences that shape key brand insights.
Often, an external team is able to spot opportunities that may previously have been overlooked, simply because they’re a step removed from the business and don’t have any preconceptions.
With the right approach, your brand insights will help you create truly targeted campaigns that speak directly to your ideal customers and are in line with what your brand stands for. They’ll help you set meaningful goals, increase your revenue and claim your space in the marketplace.
They’ll provide solid foundations to your brand strategy and make sure your internal culture empowers everyone to pull in the same direction to power the business forward.
Are you looking for insights into your brand that will help you to understand how it connects with your customers, competitors and industry? Get in touch to find out more about what it’s like to work with us on brand insights. We’d love to help.< Back to Blog