Brand value has come to assume different meanings. For some brand enthusiasts, it means how a brand is perceived. For another group, it means the monetary value of a brand, while for others, it is a combination of both. However, we will limit our scope in this article to mean the monetized value of the brand and the value of the assets it has built over the years.
For example, if Mr. Adams wants to sell his tech company to a bigger firm who would continue using the existing name, logo, and brand identity to sell their products or services, the brand value of Mr. Adam’s company is the amount paid to buy this right. Another way to decipher the brand value of Mr. Adam’s tech company is the amount needed to be spent to design, execute, promote, and amplify a totally new brand and make it at par with Mr. Adam’s company. That amount of money might include hiring a design agency, the time and effort spent on marketing and social media strategy, the cost of advertising, PR outreach and sponsorship, among others aspects. This is why the Brand value is determined based on the monetary amount the brand is worth, as stated on a balance sheet.
What are the most valuable brands in the world?
Research shows that Apple is the most valuable brand in 2022 and is valued at 355.1 billion USD. Amazon comes second with an estimated valuation of 350.3 billion USD. Google is third at 263.4 billion USD, with Microsoft coming fourth at 111.9 billion USD. Other tech companies such as Samsung, are valued at 107.3 billion USD. Facebook, valued at 101.2 billion USD, and Verizon, valued at 69.6 billion USD, rise the world’s most valuable brands list. These brands have remained on the list of the world’s most valuable brands for years ahead of Coca-Cola, Toyota and Mercedes Benz.
The Origins of Brand Value
Brand value is a modern concept. Previously consumers depended on product quality to make purchases. However, after the advertising boom of the 1960s, businesses were turned into brands. The era of modern marketing saw companies aligning themselves with positive values such as style, elegance, trustworthiness, security, and innovation. They then used these values as differentiating factors to build their business, which became crucial in their marketing strategy.
What makes a brand valuable?
Brand recognition: Have consumers heard of you?
Brand image: How do consumers perceive you?
Brand usage: Are customers actively buying from you and using your product?
Brand loyalty: Do customers prefer you over the competition?
A brand is considered valuable if it is:
- Highly recognizable – people know who they are and can recognize you easily.
- Positively perceived -people have a good view of them and they are well perceived as credible and unique in the marketplace.
- Popular – people buy and use the products or services and prefer them to the competition
- Have a loyal following -customers are ambassadors of the brand and have transcended from becoming customers to ambassadors.
How can you build a more valuable brand this year?
Enhance the Consumer Experience
Amazon is the leading brand globally. But, how did they get to achieve this? They improved on their consumer experience. Amazon is famous for providing a great user experience. This is because they offer consumers speed and convenience of sales and delivery. The idea is to make it easy for customers to prefer you and buy from you. If customers are displeased when interacting with your brand or if the process of making purchases are too bureaucratic, there will be no reason for them to want to continue buying from you, and they search for more convenient options and will in time become loyal to your competition. So, it pays critically to assess your platforms and processes on a regular basis to ensure they are user friendly and easy to navigate. Are your platforms mobile friendly? How effective and customer-centric is your customer service team? If you pay attention to the factors mentioned above, you will improve your user experience and build your brand value.
Know your Target Audience
To build a strong brand, you MUST understand your customers and appeal to them. You need to create unique and original content beyond products and features that will engage deeply with your customers’ emotions. One of the top brands globally, Apple discovered this secret and used it in their marketing campaigns. During the launch of the iPod, they used the tagline, “1000 songs in your pocket”. This, they did in a clever manner to connect with their target and without dwelling too much on product features and technicalities. Apple has demonstrated an unusual savvy and deep insight regarding how well they know their customers. They design sleek and easy-to-use products that connect intensely and emotionally.
Having a deep insight into your customers’ lifestyle is invaluable for building brand value. This will tell you where they are, how to talk to them, where to communicate to them and help you build a rich data mine on how to connect better with them. The next stage is to build a group of brand loyalists addicted to your brand and leverage them to increase and promote brand followership. It is also wise to be abreast of these target groups’ changes. Be part of the same social networks, groups, and communities where your customers hang out online, and host recurring live webinars and podcasts. This stream of customer insights will help you understand what resonates with them and give you an edge over your competitors. It will also help you create unique content, especially for this group to position yourself as a thought leader in your industry.
To make the brand stand out, you have to break out of your comfort zone. You must be willing to challenge the market’s current standards and evolve to a point your competitors can’t catch up. This will help differentiate and distinguish you from your competition. It would help if you also stuck to your company’s core values.
Work from the Inside Out
To build your brand value, you should work on your brand from the inside out by intentionally and deliberately building assets into your product or service. Apple has owned the word innovation; Samsung phones are known for their design. To create a strong brand, you should focus on owning an in-built asset such as the happiest employees, most innovative, the best customer service.
Keep your Tone of Voice Consistent
Consistency is very crucial in building brand value. The more you present your organization’s personality to prospective buyers, the more they will notice and be likely to remember you.
Using the same tone, voice language, style of writing and opinions in your conversations will avoid ambiguity and confusion and allow your audience to establish instant and easy associations with your content. You should painstakingly create a formal set of guidelines to guide content creation and ensure that your blogs, emails, and social posts all speak with one tone of voice. This consistency also helps develop an intentional and engaging brand personality that emotionally connects your prospects and customers. Brands without characters are really uninteresting. It pays to define the voice, tone, and style to speak to your customers at a deeper level. Putting a face behind the brand, such as the CEO, will help position them as experts/thought leaders and make the brand more approachable and authentic while lending credibility to the brand. It will also give the brand a humane face and a more relatable personality.
Use High Standards for Design
Design is essential for visual communication. How you use images, colors, and fonts or layout elements on your website, product package, communication materials, or email campaign will determine the perception of your brand. It will go a long way to show your brand personalities and help people decide how to perceive and interact with the brand. How your brand is packaged will determine how it is perceived and interpreted as well. Your company may be small, but it can have a powerful image and create more powerful impressions with robust, visually appealing designs. On the flip side, a bad design can destroy your brand value and underrepresent you in your industry.
Take a stand
In this era, brands stand for something boldly and vividly. Brands now take a stand about pending societal issues, and when done right, they can leverage their positioning to influence how people think. Brands have to be authentic and do this responsibly and realistically. They should be careful not to come across as opportunistic and vain. Issues such as Ozone layer depletion, water management, animal conservation, forest conservation and preservation of extinct species are some global issues brands can choose to align. By doing this, they are sending clear-cut messages about who they are, what their values are and who they choose to align with.
Summarily, every brand’s dream is to build and increase in value, however, it is a deliberate and time-consuming process which takes painstaking effort. The good news, however, is that when these strategies are implemented correctly, they pay off in the long run and go a long way to increase the perceived value of your brand.
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