Written by Cheri Quinn, Mercury Brand Strategist
There are only two reasons to do any marketing activity:
1. It builds your brand
2. It makes you money
It’s relatively easy to track marketing ROI for activities like a direct-mail coupon offering or a client acquisition event. It’s a little more difficult to determine the value of the activity that builds your brand. But, here’s a secret (not a secret) . . . building your brand, over time, also makes you money.
What does it mean to build your brand?
Brand-building activities are those that generate awareness of your organization. They communicate your organization’s value to the clients, members, team members and communities that you serve.
Why is brand awareness important?
The traditional sales and recruiting funnels of the past have changed significantly. They used to begin with initial contact but, in the information age, prospective clients and prospective members of your organization have more information available to them now than any other time in history. So, the sales and recruiting funnels actually begin BEFORE initial contact.
The need for target marketing and push marketing has shifted in these cycles because prospects have the ability to get to know you before they ever meet someone from your team or receive any direct mail piece. The funnels now begin with brand awareness. Your prospective clients, members and team members have the ability to self-identify that yours is the right organization for them before initial contact. It’s important to make your core values and authenticity known.
How do I know what people are thinking about my brand?
At Mercury, we’ve developed a process for brand awareness called Insights Gathering. It’s a blend of art and science that includes surveys, interviews, and anecdotes. During the strategy phase of The Mercury Method, we help our client determine a mix of current and past clients plus current and past team members. We then reach out to these people on our client’s behalf. Having a third-party partner, “asking for a friend” approach, elicits the most compelling responses.
We then take all the responses received and compile a report complete with survey data, direct quotes, common themes, strategic observations and opportunities. The insights report informs current brand awareness, how messaging is being received and what needs to be updated and aligned.
Insights gathering paired with discovery from leadership is the best way to determine what your clients, members and teammates think about your organization and whether it aligns with what your marketing department and leadership thinks about your organization. We then apply this information to help you build a robust brand guide that increases brand awareness, clarity and alignment.
Harness the power of your brand to drive awareness and growth.
At Mercury Creative Group we are a brand strategy and design firm, helping brands engage and connect with their desired audiences. We believe in strategy first, design second. We use The Mercury Method to take our clients through these brand-building steps:
Wondering whether or not your organization needs a change in messaging? Here are some questions to ask.
Mercury Creative Group can help.
"Insights gathering is one of my favorite parts of brand strategy. I often get to do the interview portion of this work for clients and I love hearing stories about how clients and team members perceive and interact with brands. These stories have the power to deepen connections between organizations and the people they serve. If your organization wants to gather these stories and deepen connections, let us be the friend that asks for you."
- Cherri Quinn, Mercury Brand Strategist