June 19th 2014

The Importance of Brand Consistency

Whenever I hear the word ‘branding’ the first thing I think of is that scene in Jackass 2 where Bam Margera gets branded with a branding iron. I’m not entirely sure why this immediately pops into my mind but it’s clear that this most visceral of scenes has left an impression on me.

That’s the key to a successful branding campaign: leave a mark on consumers so that before long the tenets of your business or organisation are indelibly stamped onto their minds. The importance of communicating the right message to potential consumers cannot be overstated and this can be achieved in several ways. The most memorable brands are those that have their ‘meaning’ echoed through every channel so that the design, communication and methods of engagement are all synchronised to the extent where together they embody precisely what it is a particular brand stands for.

Understanding Branding

If you get the branding aspect of your company correct then before long anything and everything you place into the public domain becomes instantly recognisable as yours; by working hard at your brand and its core values from the start you’ll save time in the long run and it will self-perpetuate to an extent, where the meaning of your brand is intrinsic to your communication and engagement as opposed to overtly stated. This subtlety of communication is something every company should strive for in its branding.

To exemplify the points above we might look at Innocent Drinks, a company which got their branding and its message right from the start. I very rarely purchase their products but I’m acutely aware of what it is that they stand for.

The design of Innocent Drinks packaging instantly exemplifies the values of the brand. It’s no good selling a product which prides itself on only containing things which are good for you and then undermine that with packaging which is harmful to the environment. The packaging is therefore 100% recycled. Given the name of the company is Innocent it’s clear that their brand should be one that is light-hearted in spirit. Their packaging might contain suggestions of what to do with it once you’ve eaten/drank their products; one example is where they tell you to draw round the lid to create an accurate representation of a watermelon. It’s fun, enjoyable and memorable. They don’t take themselves too seriously.

However, don’t be fooled: the marketing of their brand is something they evidently take very seriously.

Innocent Drinks should be proud of the consistency of their brand; across every channel they are the same. The ways they engage with their users across social media is to be applauded where they invite people to send in ideas and suggestions for Mother’s Day cards (for example). The team then create the best ones and give credit to those who suggested them. It’s a way of making their consumers and users feel good with very little effort. It encourages their consumers to come back because the time before was an enjoyable experience. This interaction with Innocent Drinks leaves an indelible mark on each individual who engages with them. By inviting interaction they encourage it.

Innocent Drinks’ name embodies what they stand for. Their packaging upholds this. The interactions across social media reinforces this. You cannot fail to be aware of their branding and what it means. By achieving a consistency from top to bottom there is no single channel which undermines the whole. So think about what message you want to get across with your branding and then embody it throughout.

Like a branding iron your brand should make its mark and leave an indelible impression.

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