Why creative branding is the secret to building your business

Thomas Paris
October 1, 2021
Why creative branding is the secret to building your business | Hoppier

Everyone knows how hard it is to make your business stand out. With countless alternatives for people to consider, it’s essential for any business to have a unique brand identity in order to develop and maintain a loyal following. Using creativity to build a lasting, reliable, and positive perception of your brand is how the most successful organizations thrive.

It’s important to capture the attention of consumers and ultimately build their trust. According to a Nielsen survey, 60% of consumers said they prefer to buy products from brands that are familiar to them. Basically if you can craft a unique brand identity that people will remember positively, more of them will buy what you’re selling.

In this guide, we’ll dive deep into creative branding and explore how your business can use it to establish an authentic and original identity.

What is creative branding?

Creative branding is how an organization positions itself as a unique entity in the eyes of consumers. Your brand serves as a representation of your company, and obviously you want to be seen in a positive way.

Although your business is just one of many that can offer a product or service to people, your goal is to give potential customers a strong impression of what you offer. If you can make your organization memorable and recognizable in the minds of the public, you’re going to have a loyal base of potential consumers who keep coming to your company for help.

What are the guidelines for creative branding?

A cool, older marketing executive who works on creative branding

Every brand should offer something a little different, and you want to demonstrate your uniqueness to your audience. With each brand having its own differentiators, every one of them will have a unique set of challenges. However, there are some common strategies that every business can use in the creative branding process.

Here are a few important guidelines to use when creating a revamped brand identity:

1. Think outside of the box

By its very nature, creative branding is about uniqueness — so don’t be afraid to think outside of the box in your strategy. Playing it safe might feel comfortable and achieve modest success, but there’s a good chance your company will be forgotten in the minds of consumers.

Take your time finding the right strategies for your business and consider various solutions. If you’re looking to grow your audience and create something that catches and keeps people’s attention, then don’t be afraid to take risks for potentially massive rewards.

2. Keep up with the trends in your field

Watching how others in your field are branding themselves is a great way to see how the market responds to their campaigns, but it also lets you build your own unique voice in comparison to your competitors.

If your competitors have positioned themselves a certain way and people are responding positively to it, build on their idea and create an even better strategy. On the flip side, if those other companies have implemented a campaign that people aren’t engaging with, you can craft your business as a direct opposite — reinforcing to consumers that your brand is the one they should support.

3. Create a unique visual element

One of the easiest ways to captivate your audience is through visuals. Whether it’s developing a new company logo, adding a signature look to your products, or making new marketing campaigns that are more visually striking, adding a unique visual element to your branding helps people see how your business is different. If you want consumers to recognize your organization, give them something they can see that makes your brand stand out from the alternatives.

4. Test your idea through market research

The importance of testing your ideas before officially launching them cannot be understated. How many times have we seen companies commit to a rebrand, only to backtrack immediately after the campaign is negatively received?

Ask your followers what they think of a possible rebranding, and use focus groups to really get a sense on how people respond to your proposed changes. It’s always a good idea to present multiple options in this testing phase, too, because you don’t always know which ideas will be the best received until you talk to unbiased people who weren’t involved in the creative process.

10 creative branding ideas to help your business

A man imagines his company's creative branding

Whether you’re looking to undergo a total rebrand, make minor tweaks, or simply brainstorm improvements as a proactive measure, changing your brand’s identity can be a daunting task. But if you come up with creative ideas and follow through, the risk of making a change will lead to the reward of growing a captivated audience.

With that in mind, here are some creative branding ideas for your business to consider:

1. Make a new logo or design

As previously mentioned, one of the easiest ways to visually alter your brand is by coming out with a new logo. A fresh look can draw lots of attention to your company, particularly in terms of social media engagement. If your company’s logo is already a unique legacy that needs to stay, another option is to make smaller tweaks to your design — perhaps try a different font, layout, icon, or another minor adjustment you feel will make a positive improvement.

An example of a successful logo rebrand comes from Instagram. They simplified their camera icon logo and filled it with vibrant colours, creating a modern and engaging look that resonated with their audience. Some of the simplest logos are the most effective, and these minimalist designs tend to stand the test of time too. Don’t feel pressured to overdo it with a flashy design — using an understated look with a modern twist is often the way to go.

2. Step up your social media game

Everyone knows how important it is for companies to have a social media presence in today’s world. Being able to attract a younger audience is the goal for any organization, and the best way to reach this coveted demographic is to go where they are — which is online. According to Statista research, over 3.6 billion people use social media online with that number expected to significantly increase in the coming years.

If you create a dynamic ad and share it online, the reach of a potentially viral campaign will dwarf anything you get from conventional media. But you don’t always need to create a viral sensation in order to generate social media buzz.

We’ve seen companies like Wendy’s develop a strong social media brand with their sarcastic tweets, so don’t be afraid to take risks. If your company is looking to improve its social media footprint, try a few different approaches to see which digital strategy works best!

3. Use a campaign that promotes inclusivity

The best way to make your products appeal to a large audience is by branding your organization as one that values everyone. Promoting inclusivity both inside and outside your business is a great solution to attract as many people as possible. Consumers love supporting companies with values that align with their own, and you can capture their attention by speaking out in support of a cause they care about.

One example of a successful inclusive campaign is Dove’s pledge to not show models in their advertisements. By featuring relatable women of all sizes rather than supermodels, they’re supporting body positivity and self-esteem for girls.

Another cause that businesses have begun voicing their support for is Black Lives Matter. Companies like Sprite, Ben & Jerry’s, and Nordstrom (among many others) released campaigns that pledged to take action — and received lots of admiration from consumers for taking a stand.

Speaking out against things like body shaming and racism demonstrates to consumers that your company shares their values. Advocating for inclusivity helps you build goodwill among the diverse consumers who echo those sentiments.

4. Be socially and environmentally responsible

Another great strategy to help your business build a positive reputation is showcasing your social and environmental responsibility. This idea is clearly more practical for larger companies with more money to give back to those less fortunate, but it’s certainly possible for anyone to brand themselves as socially or environmentally conscious.

If you’re running an established company, a great way to enhance the perception of your brand is by donating some of your profits to worthwhile causes through charitable endeavours or by sponsoring programs designed to help people struggling financially.

Many major companies have a community foundation or charity that gives back some of their profits, but another wonderful thing to do is sponsor an initiative that helps underprivileged people — perhaps a scholarship program for post-secondary students.

Even if you’re just a start-up organization that can’t afford to shell out thousands for good PR, you can still set a standard by welcoming job applications from people who didn’t attend the most prestigious schools or by using eco-friendly materials as part of your mandate.

5. Develop personalized content

It’s no secret — everyone loves feeling special. People always like hearing that they’re valued by their friends and family, so why not have your brand show them the same courtesy?

Creating personalized content helps you show your appreciation in an intimate way. A simple way to do this is by responding to your audience on social media and actively seeking out their engagement, which makes them feel valued as part of a larger community.

With the rise of technology, it’s never been easier to tailor specific recommendations to people based on their habits. If your company is able to learn what locations each of your customers are from and what products they’re most interested in, you can send them personalized recommendations that will likely appeal to them.

Adidas launched a mobile app using Salesforce technology that not only customizes product suggestions, but also generates personalized articles and video content for each user based on their shopping habits. Making clients believe you understand and appreciate them on a personal level is an effective way to build a strong relationship with those who use your products, so try going the extra mile to make them feel special!

6. Provide a memorable interactive experience

An older creative business man is excited about creative branding

Much like how everyone enjoys feeling special, people also love feeling like they're a part of something big. This passion to experience events together has never been more prevalent than in today’s digital-driven world. As a result, creating an interactive experience that encourages audience engagement is another way to build your brand.

An emerging trend among these interactive tools is the use of augmented reality, which means using sensory technology to provide an enhanced experience of a real-world environment. AR is especially good at reaching younger audiences through social media and video games, making it highly sought after.

If you’d prefer a more cost-effective strategy, one of the most common interactive experiences is creating a contest that offers prizes in exchange for audience participation and self-made audience content. Not only will you provide people the chance to win your goods, get free marketing from having them share the content, and set your brand apart from competitors with a unique and fun initiative — you also get to learn valuable information about each person entered, which is incredibly useful for building your company’s email list.

7. Reward your most loyal clients

As great as it is to grow your customer base, the most important clients tend to be the ones with established loyalty. You certainly don’t want to alienate this group of people and risk them leaving for a competitor, so rewarding them for their commitment to your brand shows that you truly appreciate their support.

A common example of rewarding customer loyalty is creating points card systems — which are widespread at retail stores, airlines, restaurants, and more. If customers collect enough points to qualify for the perks or discounts offered, it means that they strongly support your brand — and that devotion should be both rewarded and respected. Not only do you improve the chances of maintaining their support, but you also encourage other people to sign up in order to get the rewards on offer.

8. Offer quality customer service

Another method to maintain a strong relationship with your consumers is offering quality customer service. Whether it’s in-person or online, people are always going to have questions for you, so being able to provide them with answers goes a long way.

Whenever you’re shipping goods to someone, there are many different issues that can arise during the process. One of the ways a company like Amazon helps deal with people’s questions is through a customer service chatbot. It delivers nearly immediate responses to those who use it, which can help solve a lot of their queries.

Although smaller companies may lack this digital technology, they can always enhance their customer service by simply having someone available to talk to people when they need help. At the end of the day, consumers want and deserve to be heard. Offering strong customer service can significantly improve someone’s experience with your business, which will boost the chances of them continuing to use your products.

9. Work with social media influencers

A tried and true element of branding is to form partnerships with well-known ambassadors, but let’s look at how to do that creatively in today’s world. It’s unlikely your organization is lining up a lucrative endorsement with a world-famous celebrity, but there is another popular trend happening that’s much more realistic — forming partnerships with social media influencers.

These types of influencers have dedicated followers who love to watch their content, so the potential reach of their audience is massive. Most importantly, the overwhelming majority of these social media users are in that coveted younger demographic — meaning your business has the chance to create brand loyalty with this untapped audience. And thanks to the sheer volume of Instagram and TikTok influencers, it can be a very cost-effective decision.

No matter how much money your company is willing to spend on these partnerships, there will be plenty of options within any price range.

10. Form partnerships with other brands

Much like how it’s important to partner with ambassadors, it’s also worth considering a partnership with other brands. Similar to celebrity endorsements, this concept of co-branding isn’t a new idea — but it’s never been easier to form those types of partnerships.

The companies you work with shouldn't be competitors. Instead, team up a like-minded brand that provides a unique service that complements what your organization does. A popular example would be the long partnership that has existed between Nike and Apple. One provides workout gear and the other provides technology that can enhance your workout experience, so it’s a natural collaboration.

If your brand provides a service that is connected to a different product another brand provides, team up and maximize your profits. Look around at your options, consider all possibilities, and aggressively pursue the creative co-branding partnerships that you think will be mutually beneficial.

Hoppier: a creative way to help your brand

If you’re looking to partner with another brand, look no further than teaming up with Hoppier! We specialize in modern event planning, and allow businesses to create a virtual card that you can use to reward and incentivize your team or clients. Thanks to the customizable nature of the cards, it’s also a terrific way to brand your virtual events or meetings.

A virtual credit card that can be used for creative branding campaigns

Hoppier provides physical experiences for virtual attendees. Our cards allow your employees to order food or drinks from a list of available vendors, taking away the hassle of ordering food for everyone in different locations — while also being a potential tool for giving out rewards or incentives to your workers.

And if there’s any money left over on the cards, you can get it back! Rather than having a fixed amount that you’re pressured to reach, all of your unspent money can either be refunded or used for your next Hoppier event.

Be creative to make your business stand out

The secret to making your business stand out is developing a unique brand identity. And once you capture people’s attention, it’s vital to build their trust in order to keep their loyalty. So if you’re looking to improve your brand’s perception, get creative with your strategies and solutions.

One of the most important elements of building your brand is planning and hosting branded events. Check out our webinar about the best ways to create memorable and engaging virtual events, and discover our expert tips to help your business become a trendsetter.

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