Branding is essential to any business, but the ROI of creating a cohesive brand image across all channels is way too high for an eCommerce.
With various mediums to reach audiences and acquire customers, having a common and consistent brand image will help create a brand personality that people remember.
A great example here would be Red Bull.
Whenever someone sees their logo, you know the ad, event, or banner all point towards thrill and adventure. And the creative heads behind the brand have intentionally put efforts into associating their product with high-intensity emotions.
That means you can create an end-to-end cohesive brand image for your business.
In this article, you will learn about the importance of creating a cohesive brand image for eCommerce and how you can create it yourself.
Let’s get started.
Key Take Aways:
- A cohesive brand image means maintaining the way the brand is presented across all channels to create a consistent customer experience.
- E-commerce brands must create a cohesive brand to build trust, reach the target audience, and increase conversion.
- Creating an in-depth brand guideline and style guide that includes every aspect of branding, marketing, and communication helps create a cohesive brand image for eCommerce.
Importance of creating a cohesive brand image
Creating a brand image is very important as it helps build trust, gain recognition, and improve your business’s brand value.
Let’s learn about each of them and why it is important for your eCommerce to create a cohesive brand image.
Builds trust and credibility with customers
Creating a brand image for your eCommerce helps you gain the trust of your customers. It is often quoted that—knowingly or unknowingly—every business has a brand image that people and customers perceive.
When that’s the case, it will craft the brand image that aligns with what you aim for your business.
Doing so will help you connect with the right customers and gain higher credibility among your target audience. It will be easy for your customers to connect with you, your products, and the message that you are delivering.
Improves customer recognition
Recognition is one of the most important assets for a business like eCommerce. When competing in a close-knitted market, making yourself stand out is highly rewarding and important.
Creating a cohesive brand image makes your eCommerce highly recognizable. That way, when a customer sees a post on social media, watches a Youtube ad, or simply looks at a banner—they know it’s you.
This instant recall is highly rewarding for an online brand as when a customer lands on your eCommerce, it is much easier to trust the platform than an entirely new site.
To create a unified experience from social media to the checkout page, having a cohesive brand image is very important.
Increases brand loyalty
When customers are loyal to you—even if it’s a small group compared to many of your daily customers—that small group turns into the most important part of your business.
They are the customers who will choose you over your competitors, engage with you on social media, and tell their network about business.
But as we know, rarely does anyone connect with a brand because of the product. They connect with messaging or the story that the brand represents.
While Coca-Cola has great products, the message of happiness and the story of the secret recipe is what keep people hooked to it.
And all that is achieved by creating a consistent brand image across channels and mediums of communication.
Helps to differentiate your business
Let’s look at two of the most popular athletic clothing brands for women here. Gymshark and Alo Yoga.
Both are leading the industry and have almost similar niche products. But both of them have created a brand differentiation with the image they have created for themselves.
Gymshark is a brand that is commonly associated with workouts like lifting and resistance training.
Alo Yoga, on the other hand, is a brand that is associated with workouts that are associated with mobility and stretching, like yoga.
Now, even if you look at their product images, social media, banners, fonts, and even the models they work with, their message is very clearly communicated.
This helps them stand apart and target their group of audience very specifically.
Helps to create a persistent customer experience
The questions of how to approach a marketing campaign, what model to work with, what kind of social media theme to create, and much more are somewhat resolved when you are creating a cohesive brand image for eCommerce.
As you will learn further in the article, creating a brand image requires you to specify all the characters of your eCommerce.
From who the target audience is to how the look and feel should be to every aspect of your eCommerce.
This gives a great direction to you and your growing team to stay consistent with each other’s work without conflicting on the minute details.
Makes it easier to scale your business
With a defined brand image, it is easier to scale your business as every aspect of the brand is carefully curated for the audience.
Additionally, the marketing funnel is highly optimized to ensure that people know about you and buy your products whenever they find something they like.
As a brand, once you successfully penetrate a group audience, it is also easy to design new products and launch a new range.
A great example here would be Nike’s Air Jordan.
It all began with one single brand of Michael Jordan, and today there are about 35 different types of Air Jordan available in the market.
People are crazy about the brand, the shoe, and the culture it represents. All this is because this range of shoes has the sharpest brand image that no other competitor has managed to outshine yet.
Increases the value of your business
We know that creating a consistent brand image makes it easy for customers to trust and recognize you.
All these gains make your eCommerce business highly valuable as you gain a dedicated group of customers.
Brand image makes it easy to make decisions, launch new products, and understand what your core audience wants.
This reach and engagement between an eCommerce and a customer scale your business into becoming a brand. And that is what people remember when buying products from you.
How to ensure a consistent brand image across all channels?
Define your brand’s personality and values
The very first step to creating a cohesive brand image for your eCommerce is to give a personality and values to your brand.
To keep the brand image consistent, it is a very important step that you point down every aspect of what you think your brand is—sophisticated, excited, sincere, competent, or rugged.
All of them are five main brand personality traits but are only the base that builds what your brand should be.
One of the easiest to complete this brand-building exercise is by treating your brand image as a person’s identity.
Just like you know, a person has many personality attributes, being sleek, charming, aggressive, etc., and you have to fill in those traits for your brand.
Let’s look at a few popular brands and break down what personality and value they used to create a cohesive brand image:
|Dollar Shave Club
In the following table:
- Brand identity is what the brand wants people to remember about them.
- Language is the type of words and vocabulary they use to represent themselves.
- Tone-of-voice is how they sound when sharing their message.
- Characteristics are traits that define the value of your brand.
- Motivation is the type of message that they share with their audience.
- Fear is what the brand message is to escape or conquer.
The more detailed your brand characteristics are, the easier it is for you to create a consistent, cohesive brand image.
Establish brand guidelines
Ecommerce brand guidelines are all your do’s and don’t. This helps ensure that every action and decision is aligned with the brand identity.
Everything is firmly defined, including what topics and messages your brand will promote, be associated with, collaborate with, post on social media, etc.
A great exercise in understanding it better would be to ask yourself—what would a Red Bull commercial for fishing look like?
Take a minute and think.
I am sure some thrilling activity might have crossed your mind where a big fish, surfing, and cruising over the ocean might have crossed your mind.
And that’s because the brand has always actively been a thrill seeker. They indeed would have clear brand guidelines never to involve the brand with any leisure or calming activity.
Establishing clear guidelines define many aspects, including what models you’ll be hiring, what kind of product images you’ll be using, what your social feed will look like, and more.
A cohesive brand image will be created only when your brand guidelines and characters are rightfully defined.
Not only will this help you make internal decisions, but also what audience you would be attracting. People who will relate to your brand’s mindset and messaging will be your core audience, and they will be the customers who will help you grow.
Use a consistent color palette and design style
Visual elements of an eCommerce play one of the essential brand-building roles.
That is how people remember you, and that’s how people differentiate you from any other brand in the market.
This includes everything like your primary and secondary brand colors, how your images are edited, what your emails look like, and how your ads are curated.
Again, brand personality and guidelines will play a significant role in determining the right color palette and design style for your brand.
Once they are locked, ensure they are implemented at every stage of the business and followed thoroughly.
Use consistent messaging
Brand messaging is strategic messaging that defines your ideas, how you want people to perceive you, and what makes your brand unique.
Like every human, messaging is unique to every brand, even if they are almost similar.
For example, McDonald’s says, “i’m lovin’ it,” and Wendy’s says, “Quality is our Recipe.” Both are global burger chains but have distinct messaging.
One is focused on user experience, while the other messaging is based on their quality.
Slogans and headlines are among the most common ways people learn about the brand’s messaging. But they are not the only way.
The most common ways to promote your brands messaging are Tweets, Notifications, and Emails.
And as you can see, the channels of messaging have evolved, and it is important the messaging stays consistent with creating a cohesive brand image.
A lot will be learned through a defined brand’s personality, something that we discussed above.
Use the same brand voice
Once the messaging is curated, it’s time to determine how it will sound to the user and what kind of emotions users should feel.
That is, will it make people feel excited or make them feel fear? Will it evoke happiness, or will it evoke comfort?
The same tone of voice will be consistent across all the channels through which you connect with customers.
Marketing, web copy, sales, and support. Every team will have a defined brand voice that aligns and stays consistent.
It is important because once you have successfully established a voice, your customers will remember you that way. Something that will have a major impact on creating a cohesive brand image.
Be consistent with your branding materials
Banding materials are everything that your customers are going to interact with. This includes both digital and physical materials.
In order to create a cohesive brand image, your business card, letter of employment, product certification, bill, product packaging, and all the other sources of contact should be aligned with your brand.
This ensures that whenever customers interact with your brand, they know it’s you. From point zero, your branding materials should remind your customers of your brand.
And hence creating a consistent brand image that people remember, recall, and share with others.
Use high-quality imagery
The quality of images you use determines the perception of your brand and how much your consumers trust your product.
And if you think about it, your images are the only-most efficient ways to determine what you expect out of your brand when making a purchase.
To ensure that you get high-quality images for your eCommerce, make sure that you are capturing products in good lighting and using high resolution cameras for photography.
The higher your camera resolution, the more clear your products’ images are.
Once your eCommerce photography is complete, it’s time for your professional product photo editing service to get on to work.
Editing experts should ensure that there are no dirt particles, scratches, spots, etc., that create a negative user experience.
Additionally, if you are getting your eCommerce product images edited, have a clean consistent background, right shadows, and correct cropping and margin ratio for your image.
As an eCommerce brand, you must also work on creating your product styling guide that helps your retouching partners deliver the best service in the most efficient turnaround time.
Regularly review and update your branding
One of the most important parts of creating a cohesive brand image is reviewing it regularly. Just like a character evolves, your brand characteristics should evolve too.
As a creative or marketing director of eCommerce, it is essential to keep track of how your branding efforts are engaging your customers.
Two of the best resources that you can use to monitor this are social media and your support team.
When an eCommerce brand is actively engaging with customers using social media, a lot can be learned through interactions and comments.
The terms they use, the content they like, and the voice they prefer. Social media platforms allow you to test your branding ideas and see results in real-time.
To create a consistent brand image, look into how your customers are engaging with you and update your branding efforts accordingly.
The goal is to connect with the audience, and if your customers are evolving, your brand will need to evolve too.
Collaborating with targeted influencers and content creators
One of the easiest ways to create a distinct brand identity and reach your audience is through influencer marketing.
Popular media personals, social media influencers, celebrities, etc have been successful in building a brand of their own.
And did you know 37% of consumers trust influencers more than brands?
Everything we mentioned above—messaging, tone of voice, character, etc—an influencer already has one.
All you need to do is search for the people that align with your brand image and messaging. It creates an organic collaboration between your eCommerce brand and the influencer you are working with.
One of the recent most popular collaborations was between Louis Vuitton and two of the greatest football players, Cristiano Ranaldo and Leo Messi.
Right before the Qatar Fifa World Cup 2022—the most expensive world cup ever, when tensions were high, people were planning around how the two players would perform; the brand and both the players shared this post.
Two players playing chess over Louis Vuitton’s briefcase.
Undoubtingly, the whole internet was taken by storm as the brand utilized all the elements of the hype and captured it in one frame while staying true to its own brand image.
That’s the result of collaboration with the right ambassadors at the right time to get the best result.
Train your team on your brand’s identity
We know that marketing, support, sales, and every other team should align with your branding guidelines.
But it can only be possible when they are rightfully trained to do so. How to deal with a negative customer experience, how to provide support, and what kind of words and messaging to use or avoid.
All these are an important part of the branding exercise that helps in creating a cohesive brand image.
Whenever a customer interacts with your brand, directly or indirectly, they are interacting with your team.
That is the reason why your team members must be trained on how to approach a situation when in crisis and how to reach your audience the right way for your brand.
Creating a cohesive brand image essentially helps you craft a unique and memorable experience for your customers.
It’s not just about the witty email one sends or the way the logo looks. It’s a combination of every little thing you do to make customers feel connected with your brand.
This includes the way your product images are presented, how you interact with the customers in the comment sections, how your support team works with customers, and everything else as well.
The above tips will surely help you create a cohesive brand image for your eCommerce, so without any further ado, get started today.
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