Brand Authenticity: How to Find Your Authentic Voice and Build Your Brand Online?
+ 3 Examples of Companies Making a Profit While Being Authentic
Values stand at the very core of your brand and it goes much further than just having an eye-catching logo that’s memorable to your customers or clients. Values are the principles that guide your brand through to the whole process of making a brand. However, we need to make a difference between building a brand and building a truly authentic brand. In many cases, people tend to associate brands with fabrication and the illusion of authority — we are this, we can do that, we represent that. Just think, when was the last time you gave your trust to a brand that communicates with you in such a manner?
“Authenticity is a minefield, and the reason is; the last time any of us were truly authentic is when we were three months old in diapers. Ever since then we’ve been doing things on purpose.” ; marketing guru Seth Godin about brand authenticity.
Authentic means keeping it real.
Brands capable of telling their story in an authentic way and incorporate consumers emotions into their branding campaign are building a connection between themselves and their target audience. Not an easy task, right? I know, and I can tell you there’s no real formula for developing a brand voice that comes naturally to you and resonates with your audience. That being said, developing and maintaining a consistent voice for your brand also takes intention.
If your brand is a person, how would you describe its personality?
Today more than ever (Thank you, Internet!) people are eager to connect with brands on more human levels, they want to understand a company's voice and not to simply hear what they do or what are the benefits of its products or services. People want to be intrigued, entertained and if you are able to convert them into your fans they will give you their trust, even when even if your product is expensive. How do you want to be seen by them, how do you want to relate to them, what is your role in their lives and how do you help them? Those are the questions you should ask yourself before starting to communicate with your target audience through blog posts, newsletters, social media or email to your potential clients. As you incorporate narratives into your branding, focus on three ways to make storytelling truly effective:
People-focused businesses always win.
The most successful brands have it figured out: An emotional connection has a bigger impact than customer satisfaction. For example, Dove, a $200 million soap brand owned by Unilever has grown into a brand that has been estimated to be worth nearly $4 billion today. The company has been widely lauded for its Campaign for Real Beauty launched in 2004. Featuring women who weren’t models and sparked conversation around unrealistic standards managed to grow their sales from $2.5 billion to over $4 billion. As you can see, their brand success didn’t just happen. By consistently aligning its marketing efforts with its mission statement, they implemented research-based branding where marketers turned the promise of people-based marketing into a day-to-day reality.
Establish a tone and stick to it.
Every time your business launches an advertisement, updates website copy, speaks at a conference or posts on social media, you showcase your brand voice. Think, Disney! Disney has one of the most appealing voices in the world. It’s romantic, creative, and exciting, just like the brand itself. All elements of the design, service, and quality provided by the company are united under their well-known concepts ”Where dreams come true.” and “Unforgettable happens here”. The impression of “dream” is communicated as the tone and voice of Disney, for years. Disney is just magical!
People want relationships where businesses view them as individuals and respond in a much more transparent and personal way.
Transparency is a powerful tool for brand communication that can be used to regain consumers’ trust. Consumers want to be part of a community, they want to feel they have an affinity with brands that reflect their values, and it goes well beyond repeat business.
Label Insight, a firm that helps consumers understand what’s in products, found that 39% of people surveyed said they would switch to a new brand if it were completely transparent, 56% would be loyal for life, and 76% would pay more for such brands.
Think, Buffer! Guys from Buffer are known for their dedication to transparency both internally and externally. They even have a whole page on their website dedicated to transparency. As you can see, Buffer’s second value is “Default to Transparency. ”
They even shared the inside story on how they got their domain name after 2 years and how it improved their business. By being outspoken and direct about their values, Buffer has built an authentic brand that saw a 49.7% increase in their annual recurring revenue.
By digging into your brand’s personality and establishing ways to express it through your messaging, you are more likely to come off as a real human being that your audience can relate to or aspire to be like. Good luck!