The term digital branding is often used, but what actually is ‘digital branding’?
In recent years, digital branding and digital marketing have exploded onto the marketing scene. With the ever growing connectivity of consumers with everything from smart phones to social media, its no surprise that marketers want to penetrate this incredible wealth of potential clients.
So What is “Digital Branding”
In in most simple form, Digital Branding is simply “Branding.” And, it is using all the resources of the digital world like Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, etc…), search engine optimization and websites to convey your brand message.
How are Business Strategy, Digital Branding and Brand Planning linked?
The ‘Marketing Way’ is a planning framework for many businesses. It provides a road map for how digital marketing strategy links together in an effective cohesive manner.
Where to Play
The first question is essentially about which markets (and segments) a business wishes to compete in.
When looking at the options, we should think about factors such as:
Target markets – how big are they, how fast are they growing, are these clearly defined and understood?
Customer needs and wants – how are the target markets segmented?
Differentiation – to what extent will the business need to differentiate their branded product or service to appeal to the target customer and/or consumer segment?
How to Win
The second question is all about competitive advantage.
Does the business have:
A brand proposition that differentiates the business in eyes of target consumer e.g. why do consumers increasingly prefer to buy from Amazon rather than high street retailers?
The capabilities in place (assets, people, resources) that enable it to deliver the brand’s value proposition and communicate the positioning?
Positioning is what you do in the mind of your target consumer not what you do to a product or service. Emotion has been shown to be the first driver of decision-making on a consumer’s path to purchase. Emotional positioning examples include Coca-Cola, which exists to inspire moments of happiness and Cadbury, which exists to inspire moments of joy.
How to Win in-market
The third question is all about what the initiatives and activities the business will execute to win in market.
These are typically detailed in the Annual Brand Plan. For example does the business:
Have a compelling story to tell that will communicate the brand proposition and differentiate the offering in the target consumers’ minds?
Are the activities aligned from a brand and channel perspective?
What key performance indicators have been agreed to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiencies of the activities?
How will we know whether or not we are winning?
It is at the ‘situation analysis’ stage in the planning process that the communications strategy, including digital, is reviewed/developed.
So rather than being viewed as a discrete function, digital communications (or marketing) should be integrated into the business, brand and communications planning process. We can help you build a brand on the digital landscape. To find out more about how to make your brand stand out on the internet, contact us today for real insight on your unique situation.