The first Waffle Wednesday of the Autumn season was held 25.8. in our new Wonderland Leppävaara coworking space in Espoo!
Our guest speaker was Jari Aalto-Setälä.
Aalto-Setälä gave a speech about the significance of brand identity and visuality in marketing. He spoke about how these things affect especially customers and their view of brands.
Jari Aalto-Setälä is a brand consultant and a marketing professional. He has worked in creative office Sek Oy as a CEO. Nowadays he’s a founding shareholder of Laine & Aalto-Setälä office.
Without logo there’s no brand
Logo is an important part of brand communication because it helps the customer to recognize a product or service from the others. In other words, it helps the customer to remember who is talking. Logo is a symbol that represents the brand.
But how well do the customers really remember the logos of brands?
Study that was carried out in the United States in 2019 found out that simple logos are the easiest to remember. Marketing professionals who were a part of the test group were asked to draw some well-known brands from their memory. For some brands they remembered the old logo, and for some logos they used the colors in wrong ratios. For the most part the colors of the logos were remembered correctly. Drawing the logos ended up being a more difficult task. For many of the logos, the marketing professionals remembered a more simple version of the logo. But this doesn’t mean that logos should always be simple. The most important thing is that the logo is recognizable and memorable.
Openness is the key to success
Another study conducted in the United states found out that customers trust well-known brands such as Google and Amazon even more than states. Increased faith in brands also means that customers expect more openness from the companies. Trust of the customer can be easily lost if the brand doesn’t fulfill it’s promises or lies. So a company shouldn’t tell that they are sustainable if in reality they are not. Companies should communicate with their customers and it is always better to address possible mistakes before the customers find out about it from other sources. In addition to owning up to mistakes, also sharing positive news and accomplishments with customers is important. Positive attention strenghtens the brand identity and the customers can feel like they are a part of the brand’s success story.
Brand is also reflected in slogan. Slogan is a short and simple message that is visible to customers. Nike’s ”Just do it” is an example of slogan. Slogan is also a promise that the brand commits to, and that reflects the brand. Slogan is not just words, but it should reflect the brand and it’s values.
Brand brings added value to a product or service. In customer’s eyes a brand and what he believes the brand is merges together. And this view of the brand affects his decision of purchase. A customer is more likely to buy a product from brand that is already familiar to him than from a brand that he knows nothing about.
There was a study conducted in Germany that wanted to research, how brand affects customers desire to buy a product. In the study people were shown two similar fridges. One had a logo of a brand that was known for making fridges, and the other had a logo of Mercedes Benz. People were willing to pay more for the Mercedes Benz fridge, even though Mercedes Benz is only known for it’s luxury cars, not fridges. Well-known brand and in this case just a logo, can have such a strong image that customers want to buy specifically that brand and they are willing to pay more for it.
”Brand is everything people talk about you when you leave the room.”
Make your purpose and values clear
Companies that have a clear purpose and values, that the employees and customers can relate to, are more successful than their competitors. This is because customers want to buy from brands that share their values. When customers know who is behind the brand and what their values are, they are able to create even stronger bond to the brand.
Employees are more motivated when they share their company’s values and see their purpose as important. And their motivation affects their work. Motivated employees work better, and they are more likely to develop new products or services for the company.
So, the company should first convince their employees about their brand’s purpose and goal. Through the employees the brand is then communicated to the customers. If the company doesn’t know what their purpose is, it will be unclear to everyone else too.
What makes a successful strategy or brand?
When creating a strategy or a brand, you should answer questions What? How? Why?
The answer to what-question tells what product or service the brand offers.
The answer to how-question tells how the product or service is produced. This includes the things that make the brand special and make it stand out from the competition. Is your company’s production process for example more eco-friendly than competitors?
The answer to why-question tells why the product or service was made. Wasn’t there a similar product in the market yet? Or is it an improved version of some earlier product? Why would the customer choose this product?
WHAT MAKES A WINNING STRATEGY OR BRAND:
– Distinctive – What makes it us and how we will stand out from competitors
– Transformative – It responds to changes in business environment and human behaviour
– Contagious – It motivates people and becomes a topic of conversation
Many companies don’t really think about brand image when they plan their business strategy. It might be that they feel like there isn’t any time to create a brand or they simply don’t understand the importance of it.
Jari Aalto-Setälä highlighted in his speech how important it is for the company’s success to create a brand. He also talked about how strategy and brand should be developed together, the brand as a part of strategy. This is how you make sure that the brand is considered in everything the company does, and it isn’t separate from the product or service.
Good strategy combines rational and emotional thinking. This is how you make sure that the brand is kept in mind in every step from early production to marketing the final product, and not just placed on top of the final product.
Link to the Waffle Wednesday live: here