Digital Branding in 2021
In our previous blog, we analyzed the differences between digital marketing & online marketing. In many ways this blog is similar, however, digital branding has a few extra steps in growing your business online. The digital landscape has seen an increased demand for branding. Regardless if you’re in the process of launching your new website or already have one, having a strong presence online is important for your brand. In this blog, we’ll go over digital brand marketing, the benefits of using digital branding, and how it impacts the growth of your business.
Digital Brand Marketing
Without a digital presence, brands will find it increasingly difficult to grow their business. The concept of marketing has always been about connecting people in the right place at the right time. That’s why it’s crucial for businesses to stay relevant and connect with their audience. Analyzing successful brands in the digital marketing space and finding out what worked for them will only help in building your own digital brand campaign that checks all the right boxes.
Digital brand marketing not only gives your business the opportunity to set you apart from the competition, it also expands to all the touchpoints a consumer may have with your brand online. By building your online presence, you’re putting your best foot forward towards consumer awareness.
Before making any investments, consumers will naturally search for your brand online. If they are unable to find your brand rank highly within the search results, then they may start to doubt the reliability of your business. Having a substantial digital presence online displays a sense of professionalism and authority that helps prove your expertise.
What is Digital Branding?
Digital branding infuses everything about your business into a memorable element that people will associate with your business. Consider Target’s logo, the red and white circles are a prominent design that not only communicates universally, but denotes attention. Branding is one of the most effective ways to tie in creative and strategic processes to tell consumers what your company is all about.
The Three B’s
Your brand identity, which includes your logo, colors, packaging, copy, and more, is the foundation of your company. The three B’s: brand, branding, and brand identity might be related but they have different purposes. A brand is how your audience perceives your business. Branding is the process of creating and designing a distinct and memorable brand. Your brand identity is where creative areas like your website, social media, and logo come into play to feed into the branding process. When creating a meaningful brand, put your best foot forward and ask yourself a few of the following questions:
- Who are you as a company?
- What makes you unique from other brands?
- What is your brand’s mission statement?
- What are your values?
- Who is your ideal customer?
The Difference Between Digital Marketing and Digital Branding
On one hand, digital marketing focuses on finding new consumers and generating revenue, while digital branding is all about creating value and encouraging loyalty and brand awareness. Advertisements are continuously thrown at you online, even though you aren’t aware of them. That is the pinnacle of digital marketing. Ads may be in the form of a social media influencer promoting their favorite makeup or a website pop-up coupon. Digital branding, unlike conventional advertising, aims to communicate with you rather than speak at you. Rather than convincing people to make a one-time purchase, it’s more about creating an online identity and positive feelings. There are significant benefits to using digital branding in marketing strategies. Let’s take a look at four of them, now.
Benefits of Using Digital Branding in Marketing Strategy
Branding that is versatile encourages user connections and helps you to speak directly to customers through day-to-day experiences on sites they already use. Below are only four benefits of using digital branding in marketing strategies.
Build a buyer persona
To effectively target your audience you need to determine who you want to reach. Potential customers will learn about and connect with your brand through your company’s online presence. This is when it’d be best to utilize specific customer groups and the online channels they use most often, such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and others, through digital branding.
Connect with customers
Since you’re interacting on the same sites they use to connect with friends and family, effective digital branding makes consumers feel like you’re speaking directly to them. Make it personal and meaningful for one-time consumers to become loyal brand followers. A brand that isn’t searchable online ultimately does not exist in the minds of today’s consumers. That is why communication between a company and its consumers is essential.
Make more with less
The amount of savings that digital marketing can generate for marketing departments all over the world is typically the advantage that gets the most coverage. This happens because smaller companies cannot compete with bigger brands using more conventional marketing strategies. Fortunately, digital branding makes it that much easier for smaller brands to get ahead using creativity to compete at the same level.
Reach a larger audience
Social media platforms such as Tiktok, Instagram, or Twitter provide anyone the opportunity to ‘go viral.’ This chance to reach a mass audience in a short period of time is great for businesses looking to grow their brand. Sharing, posting, and liking are the sort of exposure money cannot buy.
How to Avoid Digital Branding Failure
Marketing messages are where brands constantly attempt to display more personality. If the right approach is not taken, then brands will find it hard to be successful. One way to approach branding would be to convey a personality that is more human-like. This will enhance consumers’ trust in your brand. In the digital space, this personality is conveyed through continuous engagement and presence on social media platforms. Digital branding can bridge the gap between your brand’s objectives and what your target audience wants to engage with.
7 Steps to Successful Digital Branding
Now that we’ve covered how to avoid digital branding failure, here are some ways towards successful digital branding.
A logo is a single symbol that a customer can associate with your company. A logo should reflect the personality and values of your business and target audience. The main objective during this stage is to design a logo that is memorable and works well with all your brand materials.
Similar to how your logo is the sign of your business, your website is the digital storefront location. Convenience is even more valuable now as consumers are going online to gather more details of businesses. In this case, simple and easy-to-navigate websites are more efficient. Keep pages brief and to the point, and avoid giving users too much information. Burying important information is the quickest way to get a potential customer to avoid clicking.
Brand messaging is what your business says and how it says it. The message should represent what your company does and believes, as well as speak directly to the immediate needs and desires of your customers. Refer to these questions when building your brand message.
Search engine optimization (SEO) ensures that your brand and its products are easily found on search engines, which is one of the most common ways for consumers to find you. One great place to start is Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. Here, you’ll find how Google indexes and ranks sites based on elements like:
- Active Links
- SEO Keywords
- Optimized Content
Be sure to design your website with the user in mind. Ahrefs is a valuable keyword search tool to use in your content creation process. Including active links through your content will help your website rank higher in the search results and appear more robust.
5. Social media
Almost everyone is on social media in some capacity. Your brand should also be there if your consumers are. Your posts and voice should be tailored to each platform it appears on. This is where it is beneficial to research the differences between the platforms.
Email marketing is another way to get in front of your target audience, especially those who do not use social media. Start by building an email list with leads who are more likely to be converted into web visitors or subscribers. An effective email campaign needs to be easy to read, carefully scheduled, and clearly, identify what you want to achieve with it.
With all the new ways to advertise online, it’s no longer as simple as putting a banner on a website. Online advertising utilizes the power of the internet to promote your brand or products. Below are commonly used digital advertising options:
- Search engine ads
- Display ads
- Social media ads
- Mobile and desktop feed ads
- Retargeted ads
When it comes to digital branding, cultivating a dedicated, loyal consumer base that not only buys, but also believes in your business is crucial. Try to keep things fresh, real, and transparent with your audience. This is only one blog post of many that talks about the limitless possibilities of digital branding. Do your research and figure out the best strategies for your business so that you can be successful in building relationships with your consumers.
Digital Branding Strategies
Generally, it takes 5 to 7 impressions for consumers to remember your brand (Source).
So what is the most vital piece of brand building? As a digital marketing agency, we’ve found that creating a unified digital brand strategy serves as a road map for future success. Despite its challenges, this strategy has proven to be beneficial for the long-term success of the business. This goes for intangible assets such as consumer loyalty and awareness. Not all impressions are good, that’s why having a solid digital brand strategy will help being perceived the right way.
What is a digital brand strategy?
A brand strategy is an extensive plan that focuses on the long-term growth, continuity, and emotional effect of your brand. It specifies how you set yourself apart from the competition by establishing a distinct identity. Add ‘digital’ to that and you have a marketing plan that drives growth in the form of leads and sales on online channels. In a digital brand strategy, you might include tools such as:
- User experience
- SEO and content marketing
- Social media and email marketing
- Paid advertising (PPC)
Branding Strategies for Business
Any business, let alone each social network, faces a challenge in maintaining brand consistency across all marketing touchpoints. Today there are 30 million small businesses with pages on Facebook. With so many brands vying for the spotlight, it’s crucial for them to continue to retain existing followers. This is where fully understanding your brand’s vision and target audience can maximize your digital brand strategy.
How can you ensure that you’re writing in the same tone in your online marketing as you are on your social media platforms? Before planning out your digital brand strategy, review these main checkpoints so that you can develop effective processes:
Defining your brand’s purpose not only ensures you understand your products, but you know why there’s demand for them. Take a look at your mission, vision, values, and tagline to discover your brand’s purpose.
Your target audience is the ‘who’ of the whole process. Understanding the consumers who are in need of your services will positively influence your brand strategy. This means the consumers’ lifestyle, buying habits, and behaviors.
There are a lot of opponents playing the same game as you and it can be hard to differentiate yourself from the rest. Set aside some time to review what’s working for your competitors in the marketplace to pinpoint what you could do differently, and better.
We’ve touched on this a few times throughout the blog, but your brand message is how you will communicate with your audience. Maintaining a cohesive voice will help your brand name be more memorable across various channels.
This is where you’ll put all your best practices into action through engagement. Be consistent in engagement with your audience, this will create trust through brand recognition. Another option would be to create multiple accounts for different areas of focus. At times, it’s best to have multiple accounts to hyper-focus your brand or cater to a specific audience.
From concept to completion, a digital brand strategy allows you to streamline your efforts. Once you have the framework down, it will be much easier to implement new strategic marketing approaches for your brand.
Digital Branding Services
The creative digital performance begins with developing a brand that implements a digital-first mentality. Consumers spend most of their time with your brand online whether that be your website, social media platforms, or other digital channels. That’s why it makes sense to have a digital branding agency that understands the value of branding services.
Partner with a team for all your branding, web, and digital marketing needs. With 20 years of experience, you can trust we have what it takes for your project to succeed. Our digital branding services encompass everything from increasing your brand awareness to generating more leads. Back40’s process offers:
- Discovery sessions
- Research and planning
- Develop a personalized digital marketing strategy
As marketers and business owners, we all have a role in building a strong digital brand. Work with a collaborative team of experts in all things digital branding services to take your brand to the next level.
Digital Branding FAQs
What is a digital presence?
The digital presence of your company is how it appears on the internet. Your web presence is the impression your brand makes online through content, blogs, search engines, and other digital media and channels.
What is digital branding?
Digital branding is a creative, strategic way of communicating to potential customers who you are, what you stand for, why they should work with you, and what they can expect from you. After you’ve started a business or created your first product, your first priority should be to create a brand identity.
Why is digital branding important?
Digital branding is critical because it determines how effectively you communicate your value to your customers. Digital branding is all about thinking about your future clients and how we can tell them who you are, what makes you different, and what makes you better.