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    Branding in the Age of Inbound Marketing


    The world of branding has seen a major transformation in the last few years. Branding in the age of inbound marketing now takes place almost exclusively online. While in the past it was a question of placing the right ad at the right time, today it is about constantly creating appealing content on all relevant channels. But what, exactly, does this mean? 

    The challenge

    Thanks to the Internet, practically all offers for a product or service can be compared worldwide. With such an oversupply, standing out from the crowd and remaining a step ahead in sales is not only a question of low pricing. Customers are willing to pay more for a brand product. They are prepared to wait for the delivery of their preferred brand from anywhere in the world.

    How then do you create a brand that reaches and convinces customers?

    The solution

    Branding in the age of inbound marketing involves two tasks:

    Branding

    1. Content:

    Your content not only represents your brand. Your content is your brand. Accordingly, it needs to be implemented in the best possible way. It should be appealing, informative or entertaining. The more appealing the content, the more compelling the brand. Paying attention to every detail is paramount to the process (text, images, website, structure, graphics, etc.). Make your content and hence your brand an experience.

    Good content informs customers about what they want and need to know. This must be done in a way that engages their attention. This means giving consideration to the following:

    • Product/service offering: Formulate in clear words what exactly your business is and what you are selling.
    • Implementation: Explain how you intend to win the customer over to your product or service.
    • Target group: Describe your customers. Focus on the niches in which you are specialized.

    The content should represent your business and your vendors. It should focus accordingly on the needs of your customers.

    2. Media

    Branding in the inbound age is about brand development on the Internet. As a company, you need to be active online in order to be noticed by potential customers. Successful brands have:

    • intuitive and attractive websites and landing pages
    • a strong social media presence
    • a professional newsletter that offers customers added value
    • an optimized blog that answers all customers' questions before the questions have been asked

    Website & landing pages:

    Customer-friendly websites are the calling card of every company. They should be structured in a clear, reader-friendly manner and above all inspire people to buy (call-to-action). A/B testing is a technique for optimizing website design by enabling feedback on website performance and effectiveness.

    Social media:

    In our daily lives – whether professional or private – a large part of communication takes place via social media. They offer the perfect place to increase brand awareness and establish the brand as such. Communicating directly with users creates proximity and trust and provides the perfect basis for a possible sale.

    Not every medium needs to be used. To find out which channels are suitable for a particular product, the potential target group needs to be defined. Knowing which target group is interested in a certain product indicates which media they use while on the move.

    Newsletter:

    Customer-friendly newsletters contain content and graphics tailored to their recipients. They have a clear layout and always offer added value for the customer.

    Blogs:

    In contrast to websites, the content of blogs is always new and up-to-date. Blogs should communicate product information as part of the customer service – and do so in a simple, uncomplicated manner.

    Regardless of the channel visited by the potential customer/partner, each medium should convey the brand experience so that the value is the same.

    Brand image

    Before creating your own brand, it is important to be clear which characteristics or image you want the brand to embody. What should people associate with the brand? What should my brand present/convey?

    Your brand image should take into account the wishes of your customers while also highlighting the special features that differentiate you from the competition. What can we do better than our competitors? Why should customers buy from us rather than from our rivals? What makes us special?

    Once you have defined your target group and value propositions, your task is to create a claim that appeals to your potential customers. Finding this is not easy. You know you have it when people always associate the claim with the brand.

    Monitoring

    Comprehensive brand monitoring requires knowing the full history of queries about offers. Which channel did the customer use first? Where did he read which information? Which information did he download? To be able to answer all these questions, you need the right technology and plenty of time. The results must be monitored and analyzed continuously. Only then can you evaluate the media used and respond accordingly.

    Things that should be measured:

    1. Which keywords receive the most clicks when users visit your website?

    2. Which blog themes receive the most responses (comments, social media shares, links)?

    3. Which mail content attracts the most feedback?

    4. Which landing pages receive the greatest number of queries?

    5. What is the ratio of new fans to sales figures during a campaign?

    6. Which social media content attracts the greatest attention?

    W4-tip: With the right keywords (company name, executives' names, names of publicly accessible employees, brand names of products, services and features, etc.), Google Alerts can help you conduct an initial, uncomplicated and adequate brand monitoring.

    Tags: Social Media Marketing Branding Inbound Marketing

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