4 Deadly Branding Mistakes

by Christine Johns | May 11, 2018 | Branding, Creative

You will never get a second chance to make a first impression. – Will Rogers

First impressions. A majority of the time they are off-base and flat-out wrong. Unfortunately, for many of your potential customers or donors, their first impression of you is the only thing they know about your organization. And like having bad breath on a first date, a simple branding mistake can bring the budding relationship to a quick end.

Unfortunately, people do not care how well-intentioned you are or how early you get out of bed in the morning to post your motivational quotes about how “hustle is everything” on Instagram.

Below are some of the most common branding mistakes that can damage your reputation and reduce your potential:

1. Branding without accountability.

Undoubtedly, having a strong brand is always advantageous. It can create a positive perception and make it easier to engage people.

However, you are more than just a logo, a marketing campaign, or slick product packaging. Ultimately, your brand is the emotion that a customer feels when thinking about your product. Make sure it is the right emotion.

Branding is helpful to create a positive perception about your product or service. However, what people experience is even more important. One of the best ways to improve your customers’ experience with your organization is to quickly resolve customer service issues. Whether it is implementing an email response strategy or adding live chat to your website, establish a system that always leaves your customer confident that you care about them.

2. Looking like you don’t know who you are.

You have vision. You have drive. You have an amazing staff. Yes!

You have a terrible logo. Ugh.

If your logo and collateral look clumsy and amateurish, so does your business. Your customers will wonder if you really know yourself. When you do not project confidence about your product or service, it can be a reputation killer. Make the investment in hiring a qualified designer or agency who can craft a logo that is memorable, readable, scalable, and has enduring value.

Additionally, be sure to develop a style guide that provides visual definition and consistency for your brand. It’s an investment that will pay in spades.

3. Messaging lacks consistency

Congratulations! You have a brand style guide! Now what? Do you really have to follow it? Do you not have more important things to do?

If you lack consistency, your brand will lose its identity and become confusing, costing you consumer confidence. Managing brand consistency across all marketing channels differentiates you from your competitors and helps you to accelerate your brand’s growth. A clear, consistent brand identity will not only foster a sense of trust and comfort, but it also plays a vital role in influencing your purchasing or giving decision.

Stick to your plan. Follow your brand’s style guide on all your marketing campaigns across multiple channels, especially your website, social networking profiles, and printed materials.

4. Your brand voice has taken the day off.

Many brands have fallen prey to the lure of lazy copywriting. After all, does anyone really care about what you write? Indeed, they do.

Using vague copy to describe your brand can be a major setback. Potential customers or donors are researching your brand when you least expect it. Be sure you are positioned to clearly inform them about what you do, what you stand for, and how you can make a difference in their lives. This positions your brand solidly and distinguishes you from the competitors.

Sometimes organizations struggle to define and establish their brand. Help is not hard to find. Let Infinity Concepts help you develop a powerful and enduring brand strategy!

Christine Johns
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