You engage in branding as a means of telling consumers what your business is about, including not only what you’re selling, but also your core values and what you stand for. Consumers can buy any number of products, but they stick with known brands because of the reputation and rapport that are built over time. Of course, your company doesn’t exist in a bubble – there are plenty of other businesses offering similar fare. Branding also sets you apart from your competitors.
How can you tell if your marketing and branding efforts are effective? How do you know where you stand with the competition? How will you know if you need to improve, and if so, in what areas? If you aren’t sure about the relative status of your company in the market, it’s time to ask your trusted Asheville branding and marketing partner to help you perform a brand audit. What is a brand audit, and how and why should you perform one? Here’s what you need to know.
What is a Brand Audit?
You naturally want your brand to be strong, insomuch as customers consistently prefer it to You engage in branding as a means of telling consumers what your business is about, competitive brands. A strong brand draws in customers, compels loyal patronage, and ensure ongoing profit and growth potential. How can you keep your brand strong? By understanding your position in the market.
This begins with regular brand audits, which generally include an assessment of your position amongst competitors, as well as your relative effectiveness overall. A brand audit pinpoints strengths and weaknesses so that you better understand the impact you have in the marketplace and how best to move forward with plans that will help you to thrive.
Even with a solid plan for growth over the course of several years, it’s not unusual to fall into a rut or hit a plateau. It may not even be your fault – it could be related to changing trends and tastes that you haven’t yet accounted for. When you turn to your Asheville branding and marketing partner to help you perform an audit, you’ll gain knowledge and insight into where you’re succeeding, where you’re failing, and what you can do to adjust course and improve.
How An Agency Can Help Conduct a Brand Audit
A brand audit essentially covers three main areas: internal branding, including your core values and your mission; external branding, including the brand imaging and marketing materials you create for public consumption; and the overall customer experience, including customer interactions with your brand and public perception. It’s important to understand what you’re auditing so you can find effective ways to measure successes and shortcomings.
The next step is to collaborate with your Asheville branding partner on what you’re going to measure. On your end, you should provide a copy of your mission, your current business plan, marketing plans, and goals, both current and long-term. An experienced branding services agency can assess external marketing factors like market position without your input, but for internal considerations, the information you provide is necessary and invaluable.
Like any audit, there will be a lot of information to collect and analyze, from website and social media tracking data, to sales data for your company and your competitors. You also need to survey consumers (both customers and prospective buyers in your target demographic) to see how your branding and marketing efforts measure up. Once you’ve reviewed the data and determined how best to improve moving forward, all that remains is to implement a plan, monitor your progress, and perform regular brand audits to reassess and tweak your strategy as needed.
Benefits of Performing a Brand Audit
There’s no denying that audits are a lot of work. You may be understandably hesitant to undertake a brand audit if you feel like your company is doing well enough. However, there is always room to improve, and if you don’t bother to learn where you’re falling short, seemingly small and inconsequential issues could balloon to major concerns down the line.
You need to keep your finger on the pulse of your business and the marketplace in which it exists so that you can enjoy increasing successes. A brand audit not only helps you spot areas where improvement is needed, but when you update your strategy, you stand to increase brand awareness, improve brand reputation, surpass competitors, and ultimately, boost profits and grow your business.
With the assistance of qualified professionals like the experts at Storypowered, you can build and maintain a successful brand that stands the test of time.