In our last blog post, we looked at marketing asset management- that is, managing your various print and online materials that help you tell your company’s story. In this blog, we’ll take a look at brand asset management. While the two terms sound similar, and are very related, there are differences. Brand asset management refers essentially to your overall strategy for how your company’s reputation is managed. Brand asset management is more strategic, whereas marketing asset management is more tactical. The marketing assets are the tools you use to build and maintain your brand.
Brand asset management is one of the toughest marketing challenges that companies face.
Time and resources are factors in that challenge. Given all of the competing priorities that demand your attention, focusing on how your brand is being portrayed can all too often fall by the wayside. But it’s important to make the time to continuously monitor your brand. Have a process in place to ensure that your company’s visual and verbal messages match your mission and goals. Take time to understand your audience in order to ensure your brand offers solutions to their needs. Identify what makes your company different from your competitors. Consider such factors as price, quality, customer service and reliability.
Getting your message heard above the noise is another brand management challenge. It can be difficult to make your brand unique, ensuring it stands out from your competitors. Make sure it is easy to recognize and remember. Think of the Nike “swoosh,” the Target “bullseye,” or the Coca-Cola script style. Take a look at your logo, color scheme, font style, even your name and Web URL. Do they still accurately represent your company’s mission, goals and culture? Pay attention to current news and trends that may be applicable to your customers. This will help ensure your brand and your assets are evolving, so that you stay top of mind with your target audience.
Social media also makes brand management challenging. There are of course undeniable benefits to having direct, real-time access to your customers. By interacting with them consistently, you build a relationship with them. By immediately responding to any questions or complaints, you can develop a loyal following. However, it’s important to strike the right balance between engaging with your customers, and having them positively promote your brand through their channels, while still maintaining control of your brand and messaging. That’s why your company’s social media presence is vital to your brand, and you should devote the time and resources needed for a well planned and executed ongoing strategy.
You need to think about your brand, and your assets holistically. Make sure you are sending a consistent message about your brand across all your marketing channels. Also realize that brand management is not just the responsibility of your marketing team: everyone in your organization needs to be on the same page and follow established guidelines for ensuring the company is represented accurately and consistently—whether it’s through visual marketing assets such as a sales brochure, or a white paper, or through verbal assets such as a customer service response or initial meeting with potential customers.
Keeping your brand carefully managed is one of the most important things you can do for your company’s success. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be complex or overwhelming and will result in fostering a strong and trusted relationship with your customers, as well as a sought after resource for new clients.