Many large companies use branded language, so much so that consumers have stopped really noticing. However, this method of driving home a brand definitely has a subconscious effect. Here are a few ways that you can use brand language to build your brand and create a cohesive experience that will keep customers coming back.
- Tie your name and logo design into every possible communication. One company that has had great success with this is vodka favorite Absolut. The use of the company name infiltrates communications, which can be seen on the website. Visitors begin at ‘Absolut Home’ and from there interact with the Absolut brand through ‘Absolut Pictures’, ‘Absolut Reality’, and even ‘Absolut Contact’. This word is used just as often in other media, such as in their well known magazine ads. There is no looking at this website and not knowing what brand you are dealing with, which makes it easier for customers to get to know the brand.
- Choose the language that will define your brand. What do you want people to think about when they picture your small business? Make a short list of words and then use them consistently, not just in marketing but in everyday interactions with your company as well. Consider the success of Disney when it comes to branding. In a survey, people were found to associate the words ‘magic’ and ‘dreams’ with this global media giant. This is no accident; a close look at Disney marketing and communication shows that these words have been used consistently for decades. At the theme parks, characters even use this language in everyday communications, for instance wishing guests a ‘magical day’ instead of a merely good one.
- Focus on versatility. Words like ‘Absolut’ and ‘magical’ fit neatly into a variety of contexts and communications, making them easy to use on a consistent basis. If the companies in question had chosen something more unwieldy, the result would certainly not be the same. Your branded language needs to follow the same guidelines. The goal isn’t to create awkward sentences; it is to control consumer perception by telling them exactly how to perceive you.
- Use the smash test. Customers should be able to look at any single piece of your brand and identify it with your company. Break apart your logo design, taglines, signature colors, and branded language. While it is important that these come together into a cohesive and attractive whole, they should also be able to stand on their own as a recognizable part of your brand when taken out of their context. This is called the ‘smash test’, and it is the measure of a truly great brand.
- Be patient. This is one aspect of branding that cannot be rushed. It will take years for customers to associate your branded language with your brand, but the results will be worth the wait. Luckily, this form of marketing and brand building is completely free, so you can afford to throw in a few choice words and wait for the effect to take hold.