September, 2018

 

Take a minute to answer this: What is your brand personality? Write down at least three solid traits (one word each) of your business.

brand personality profile

Now ask this question to your team. Are the personality traits the same? If your team isn’t on the same page about your brand personality, your audience is going to have a difficult time understanding your brand, too.

Brand personality defined

Brand personality is more than how you use your logo, fonts, and colors — though that consistency is important — it’s the messaging, the voice, the persona your brand presents to your audience. Your customers may be drawn to your beautiful logo and color palette, but the ultimate bond is created when they experience a personal connection with your brand.

Human characteristics

Think about it. If your brand were your real-life friend, you would want to know them. He or she may wear a cool T-shirt and sport the same brand shoes on a regular basis, but what really matters is at the core of that friend. Your entire team’s understanding of your brand is critical to the makeup of your brand personality.

Whether you’re taking control of it or not, your brand personality is evolving. What’s driving its direction?

brand personality growth chart on wall

Craft your brand personality

Here are 3 quick tips for defining (or redefining) your brand character traits:

1. Brainstorm with your team.

Individually, collect some words you feel describe your brand (or the direction you want your brand to go). Let this be a free form exercise. At the end of the designated time, come together to compare your individual lists.

2. Narrow your list.

As you compare your lists as a team, keep track of which words echoed, and combine synonyms. This list may still be long, depending on how unified your keywords were.

3. Build a profile.

Using your team list, talk about your brand as a person. If you were to embody your brand, what would it look like? Clarify age, interests, values, goals, beliefs. Is it a man or woman? Gentle or dominant? Energetic or laid-back? Witty or serious? Figure out who your brand is, and make sure your team is in complete agreement.

We, at TCD, can also lend our expertise and take you through this evaluation process.

Once your brand personality is clear, you can take back the wheel and make sure all that’s communicated about your brand lines up with the profile you’ve created.

Clarifying confusion: a mini case study

Public charter school Académie Lafayette (AL) had a perception problem: people did not understand the public charter concept or the school’s need for funding. Even though the school had been operating since 1999, it needed to better communicate its offerings and — you guessed it — brand personality.

Académie Lafayette Branding Logo Design

When we developed the school’s logo, we collaborated with the AL team to define the school’s brand personality. The logo was just the start of a larger initiative to position AL. Following the logo creation, we designed a brochure that explained AL’s educational structure and inherent financial challenges.

Académie Lafayette brand personality brochure

Storytelling, testimonials, facts and figures, and overall messaging pointed to the school’s brand personality traits:

  • Cultural
  • Engaged
  • Innovative
  • Resourceful

Academie Lafayette brand personality brochure

The Académie Lafayette brochure became a valuable resource for staff members to share the same message about the school, and it alleviated confusion among community members and parents.

Since the brochure’s creation, Académie Lafayette has added 250+ students. We’ve continued to support AL in its communication efforts through other printed materials and a responsive website, all which promote the solidified brand personality.

Build your brand

Is your brand experiencing an identity crisis? Call or email us now to see how we can help you discover your true brand personality and better communicate it to all audiences.

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Posted on: September 12th, 2018 by Laura Uber

 

When your business captures a new lead, do you turn to your lead nurture strategy, or do you push the sale? Do you do any outreach, or do you neglect the new lead, allowing it to spill out of your sales funnel?

Surprisingly, 79% of marketing leads never convert to sales, and the lack of lead nurture is often the cause.

(MarketingSherpa via HubSpot)

Yet, when a company excels at lead nurturing, it generates 50% more sales leads at a 33% lower cost (Forrester Research via HubSpot).

lead nurture to contract deal credit rawpixel

Lead nurture defined

Lead nurture campaigns create effective touchpoints with your defined target group. They position your business as the best choice to achieve a prospect’s objectives (HubSpot’s Intro to Lead Gen).

Lead nurture requires a strong plan and great patience (since 73% of all B2B leads are not sales-ready, MarketingSherpa). Still, meeting prospects where they are is key to winning their loyalty and earning their business over time.

Here are our 5 steps to win and retain customers through lead nurturing:

1. Know your sales process.

If you haven’t mapped out a sales funnel, this is crucial to initiate any lead nurture campaigns. It’s imperative that you know your audience and anticipate your customers’ entry and exit points in your sales process.

sales client process customer journey sample

We have recently created sales funnels for clients. By evaluating their processes for getting (and keeping) customers, we chart the standard customer journey. Identify strong points (e.g., the success of customers who enter the funnel through organic search) and weak points (e.g., customer churn following a demo) to help you narrow your lead nurture focus.

2. Plan your lead nurture strategy.

With the insights gained from evaluating your sales process, clarify objectives. Do customers need more information about your offerings? What was lacking that caused them to bounce off your site? Answers to these questions can uncover your campaign’s main idea and audience segments.

lead nurture client process customer journey sample marketing communications

Knowing your sales process allows you to see where lead nurturing (and later, customer nurturing) fits best.

Email campaigns are an effective (and time-efficient) solution, but you can also send direct mail or cultivate relationships at events. Plan what you’ll share and when you’ll share it. What have you already learned about your leads? Consider how you can carry those conversations forward.

Create touchpoints with your leads on a regular basis (“regular” being relative to your industry). Communicating consistently ≠ constantly. For some, that may be 1–2 times a week, and for others, it may be 3 times a month. You know the pace of your industry, and we’d love to help you find that balance.

3. Share relevant content.

Be concise, compelling, and current. Use your findings from the previous 2 steps to drive your campaign content. You can also look to your website analytics to see what content receives the most attention.

Building trust and showing your expertise will be more effective than an off-putting one-time promo. Ideally, your communication answers questions that alleviates stumbling blocks in the sales process, moving leads closer to — or further down — the pipeline.

Additionally, sharing relevant content creates the potential to attract new website visitors and generate new leads. If your content is unique and reveals new insights, your emails are likely to be forwarded to coworkers or friends, expanding your reach and drawing new people to your business (HubSpot’s Intro to Lead Gen). As you develop more and more content, maximize your reach even further by repurposing it.

4. Respond promptly.

Your responsiveness to leads is often indicative of your win or loss of a customer, as 35–50% of sales go to the first-responding vendor (InsideSales.com via HubSpot). On top of that, the odds of a lead entering the sales process are 23 times greater when that lead is contacted within 5 minutes versus 30 minutes (after an inbound lead converts on your website) (HubSpot).

Consider automating a lead nurture message when someone converts on your website, and have a plan of action when a lead reaches out to you. If the average response time of B2B companies to its leads is 42 hours, they’re likely missing opportunities. Furthermore, only 37% of companies respond to their leads within an hour, and 23% never respond at all (HubSpot). Stay ahead of the curve, and prove that your business is attentive to its customers.

5. Measure success.

How did it go? If you’re implementing a series of lead nurture campaigns, make sure you look at what worked and what didn’t. There’s no reason to recycle the same tactics if they’re ineffective. Find a better way, and keep improving.

Know that lead nurturing usually isn’t instantaneous; however, it is effective. (We explain marketing ROI more in depth in this post.) On average, nurtured leads produce a 20% increase in sales opportunities compared to non-nurtured leads (Demand Gen Report). When it comes to lead nurture, slow and steady wins the race.

When leads turn loyal

You’re running a business. The obvious goal is to convert leads into paying customers. By maintaining an active, effective lead nurture strategy, you can move leads into and through your sales process.

The nurturing doesn’t stop once you’ve “hooked” them. Another level of strategy comes into play: nurturing your client partnerships. (Though it’s not a topic we’re covering today, a couple customer nurturing strategies include showing appreciation through gifts or sharing insights through events.)

Through your lead nurturing, you can help prospects move to customers, and ultimately, to advocates. With advocates for your brand, you will be supported by a team ready to share its satisfaction with your services, creating another entry point for leads into your sales funnel.

prospect customer advocate process chart

Do you have a clear structure for your sales process? If not, call or email us. As strategic consultants, we can help you visualize and better understand your structure.

Already have a sales process? We can offer a fresh look, identify weak areas, and recommend marketing solutions. Call or email us today.

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Posted on: September 5th, 2018 by Laura Uber

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