Whether you are the proprietor of a small local business, or part of an international organization, brand positioning is key to your success. Is your brand widely recognized? Do your name and logo generate a positive reaction by your competitors, as well as clients, staff or volunteers, and community leaders?
Have you considered the longevity of your leadership? Where you will be in five years? Is your organization likely to continue beyond your leadership? How might your organization develop over the next five years? How are you planning for your departure from the organization? Might employees or family become partners or owners? Or are you likely sell to outsiders? If you are a non-profit, how do you envision the needs of your clientele changing? Who might emerge to lead your organization to its next level of success? Your response to these key questions will help you in determining a program of image enhancement appropriate to both your current and projected needs.
Don't neglect your homework! Are there gaps in your current operational procedures? Analyzing market realities encompasses more than determining your margin of profit as a commercial enterprise, or the scale of donations received, if you are a non-profit. Knowing local, regional and international standards for your product or service can reveal your ideal market niche and provide a foundation on which you can build prolonged success. Exploring the operations of neighboring organizations, plus competitors, suppliers, and associated enterprises, may generate fresh ideas for improving your image and effectively targeting your desired market.
Launching a successful program of image enhancement includes examining every area of daily operation. Remember that an effective marketing program will place your entire organization in the bull's eye of public attention. Do your signage, office and/or storefront reflect your industry? Are clients and other visitors greeted warmly by phone, in person and on the Internet? And what about the foundation of your organization? Have you reviewed your values, vision, and mission statements recently? Is your Executive Summary articulate and compact? Are your business and/or development plans comprehensive and include up-to-date statistics? Are you using these materials effectively to help reach your goals?
How do you describe your clientele? Can you succinctly pinpoint the demographics of your current client base. How do these data compare with your desired clientele? Your answers should reveal potential changes in the focus of your branding efforts. Some experts assert that periodic surveys may yield unwelcome responses, but I propose that even negative responses can fortify your sense of purpose and lead to clarity in strategic planning! Effectively surveying staff, family and friends, plus past and present clients, may yield a fresh view of your image and unexpected ideas for achieving success...and even help determine what may appeal to successors, potential buyers, or other inheritors of your enterprise.
Put synergy to work for you. You already know you need to set goals in your enhancement of daily operations to ensure your target market knows you. When you are confident in your leadership role, you can feel comfortable in inviting dialogue with staff or volunteers to enhance their sense of identity as pro-active members in your organizational development. By encouraging appropriate opportunities for team input, your self-promotion and expansion will be stronger than if you rely on management or outside consultants solely.
Seek new success in your past! No one lives in a vacuum. Even if it is time for a clean sweep, taking stock of the myriad aspects of your day-to-day business can yield far more than negativity. Remember, you ARE where you ARE because of your past. Considering what you've already paid in time, energy and resources, it's worth reviewing your journey! Even if you are experiencing a downward trend, or have accomplished only modest growth, you can review the people and activities that have helped you accomplish each level of success. Hopefully, you have scrapbooks or folders of evolving logos and stationery, advertising campaigns and special events. And from these past successes, you may recognize patterns that are worthy of reconsideration! Even a fifty-year old logo's starring character can get a new wardrobe, haircut, and backdrop to proudly announce the longevity of your enterprise...plus your awareness of today's trends!
Plotting your promo roadmap. Regularly compare your business plan with your daily operations ... maintaining a file of potential, as well as past, promo projects and
your preferred design elements. To ensure you are moving forward positively, shape
every aspect of your public relations and marketing campaigns to meet your goals.
To save time, money and energy, jump-start the impact and appropriateness of
your branding consultant by summarizing past promotional successes,
defining design preferences and being forthright about your goals.
For further tips on enhancing your branding efforts, please visit Jeanne's Blog.
WHAT BRANDING STRATEGIES EFFECTIVELY HIGHLIGHT YOUR UNIQUE ORGANIZATION?
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