Digital Branding in 2021
Depending on your business goals, the way you approach a digital brand strategy may vary. Digital branding focuses on providing value that inspires loyalty and brand recognition with a longer-term marketing strategy. COVID-19 has altered the marketing landscape and consumer behavior. Instead of going to the physical business or store location, people are going online. This means that businesses with strong online offerings are automatically ahead of the competition. In 2021, digital branding tools and their related strategies have gained even more traction throughout the pandemic. Let’s take a look at the successful steps in digital marketing to help you stay at the forefront.
10 Steps to Successful Digital Branding
A successful brand is the result of a series of actions taken to cultivate a brand, underpinned by a set of characteristics that guide and reinforce its identity over time. Maintain this momentum and ensuring it stays relevant in the consumers’ minds is what it means to have a successful digital brand. Read more about these steps towards successful digital branding below!
1. Business Logo
Target, Apple, McDonald’s, and Tesla all have one thing in common – a strong brand identity. These companies have perfected their brand to connect with their audience both visually and emotionally. One of the first steps towards creating a successful identity is a logo. A logo is the symbolization of your business, one that your target audience should be able to easily identify and associate with your company. The main goal during this stage is to design a logo that is not only memorable, but works well with all your brand materials.
Below are a few rules to keep in mind when designing your logo :
- Avoid complicated designs, your audience should be able to recognize your brand just from the logo.
- Select appropriate colors that suit your business, brand personality, and target audience.
- Make the design distinct from your competitors.
- Be sure that the logo can easily integrate, enlarge and reduce for display on websites, pamphlets, letterhead, business cards, and social media platforms.
2. Brand Story
Storytelling is all the rage these days. If you are able to understand the power of storytelling, then you have the ability to build a connection with your audience and transform your online presence. How does your story develop authenticity though? Trust is built through transparency and when you tell your personal brand story, the message should be personality-driven. A story filled with personality will help in connecting with your audience on an emotional level.
To meet the requirements of a solid brand story, you need to full-fill these points below :
- Transparency and reliability throughout the message.
- Communicate with the audience on an emotional level.
- Consistency across all collaterals.
3. Business Website
Your website is the digital storefront location. As more and more consumers are going online to learn about businesses, having a website is crucial. The website’s content should communicate authentic and brand messaging statements that do not deviate from the company’s core values and cultures. One of the most valuable features you can provide your audience with is convenience. In this retrospect, simple and easy-to-navigate websites are more effective. A few ways you can offer quality user experience are :
- Keep pages brief and to-the-point
- Avoid burying important information
- Use colors and fonts that are easy to read
4. Brand Messaging
Simply put, your brand message is what your company says and how it says it. Every aspect of the brand message strategy should motivate your audience to take some sort of action whether that be purchasing a product or contacting you. The brand message is something that others recognize and relate to, whether it is a tagline (company-centered) or a slogan (product/campaign-centered). Creating a brand message that resonates starts with your audience and your goals.
You may recognize these brand messages below :
- Geico: “15 minutes or less can save you 15% or more on car insurance.”
- Coca-Cola: “To inspire moments of optimism and uplift.”
- Starbucks: “To inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time.”
- Walmart: “Save money. Live better.”
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the technical process that ensures your brand and its products are easily found on search engines. You can find how search works on Google webmaster guidelines and see how you can rank based on elements such as, active links, SEO keywords, and optimized content. One of the most common ways your audience will find you is through keywords. For this reason, SEO aids in increasing the quantity and quality of website traffic by increasing the visibility of your brand’s website or web page to a web search engine’s audience. Just be sure to design your website with the user in mind.
Below are a few productive tips to stay on top of your SEO game :
- Highlight or emphasize a high ranking or useful keyword
- Use ahrefs as a search engine tool for these keywords
- Complete a thorough competitor analysis
- Claim and optimize your Google My Business listing to improve your ranking in Google’s Map Pack
- Incorporate the keywords into your headings
- Insert both external and internal links throughout your website content
- Ensure you have relevant meta descriptions for each page
6. Social Media
In some way or another, almost everyone has access to social media. If your consumers are on social media, so should your brand. Anything having to do with content should reflect your brand message and be tailored to each platform. Tools such as Hootsuite and Sprout can aid in streamlining posting your content on various platforms and track engagement. Working with a digital marketing team can help you establish your brand online and increase your social influence.
7. Email Marketing
Email marketing is another way to get in front of your audience. Compared to other channels of marketing, emailing is an inexpensive way to advertise your brand. Once you have gathered an email list with leads, you can then develop an effective email marketing campaign. An effective campaign might offer special discounts on products and services to help increase brand loyalty. An effective email campaign needs to be :
- Easy to read
- Carefully scheduled
- Clearly identify what you want to achieve with it
8. Content Marketing
Content marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach your audience through content marketing. Not only does it drive traffic to your site, it gives the audience useful, actionable content that they need to solve their problems. Truthfully, 300-word blog posts rarely work anymore. In today’s world, Google expects longer-form authoritative content that covers a topic in more detail. For content to rank in a more competitive world it needs to engage and educate the user. For this reason, our digital branding services also include content creation, this includes blog posts. To gain higher visibility in search engines, you can :
- Prioritize your blog posts
- Address SEO issues on your website
- Incorporate keywords into every piece of content you create
- Connect with your audience on various social media platforms
9. Online Advertising
The online advertising landscape is changing constantly. Online advertising has been shown to be extremely productive and profitable for both small and large businesses. With all of the new ways to advertise, utilizing the internet can help you improve the effectiveness of your organic marketing efforts. One way companies have advertised is by incorporating their advertising messages into editorial content or valuable services. To cultivate a loyal audience that not only buys, but has trust in your business is essential to successful digital branding. Below are ways businesses are advertising online :
- Search engine ads
- Social media ads
- Display ads
- Mobile and desktop feed ads
- Retargeted ads
10. Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Pay-per-click (PPC) is valuable to the digital branding process and acts as a way to gain more traffic to your site. PPC is a type of marketing where advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. One of the most important types of PPC is search engine advertising. When a keyword search is related to a business offering, it allows advertisers to bid for ad placement in a search engine’s sponsored links. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to :
- Strengthen your business goals
- Measure and track your performance
- Target consumer outside of those who are aware of your brand
- Gain more control over your marketing campaigns
Building a Digital Brand Together
Now that we’ve covered ways to successfully build your digital brand, it’s time to capitalize on it in order to maximize the return on your paid advertising investment. Utilizing the branding elements mentioned above will only build more trust with your target audience and increase conversions.
By partnering with a team of digital marketing experts, you can get the most out of your branding efforts. Whether you need help with digital campaign management or building a new brand, our experts will help you develop a style guide and clear digital branding strategy so that you can take your brand to the next level. Take a look at a few digital branding services we offer :
Digital Branding FAQs
Why is brand identity important?
Brand identity is a promise to your audience and your company’s personality. A brand identity assists you in differentiating your company from the competition and positioning your brand appropriately. Creating a professional, creative identity design can help you stand out in your market to potential customers.
Where do I begin?
Building a digital brand can be overwhelming, however, teaming up a team who understands your situation and can provide guidance on building your brand identity can help make the process that much easier.
What is the most effective digital branding strategy?
Since everyone’s business goals are different, the digital branding strategy has to be tailored to those goals as well. By outlining your business goals, our digital branding services can help you decide which digital marketing tactics best suit your goals.