By Andrew Dark, Director and Co-Owner of Custom Planet
New year, new branding! In this article, Andrew Dark, Director and Co-Owner of Custom Planet, shares his tips for businesses who want to stand out in 2022.
Businesses have always needed to be adaptable in order to succeed. But in the lead-up to 2022, there have been bigger disrupters than usual affecting the wants and needs of consumers, including the pandemic and climate change. With these issues at the forefront of everyone’s minds, it could be said that every business needs to shake up its branding and make sure it’s appealing to more modern consumers.
Here, I’ll take you through five ways you can make sure your business gets the attention it deserves this year.
Reflect the changing needs of your customers
It’s crucial you keep up with consumer trends in order to develop your branding and marketing strategy, and there are a few prominent trends for businesses to take into consideration in 2022. These include sustainability, diversity, and community.
It’s important to remember that customers are becoming more savvy when it comes to virtue signalling and ‘greenwashing’, so you need to make sure you’re making more than just superficial changes if you want your business to succeed.
Focus on sustainability
The sustainability movement has been on the rise for several years now and is impossible for businesses to ignore, no matter what you specialise in. Things like your packaging, energy efficiency, and carbon emissions are under more scrutiny than ever before, and if you want to keep customers from switching to competitors with better eco-credentials, you need to make sure you’re hitting your sustainability targets (Deloitte).
Improve your diversity
Diversity is another factor you should consider when it comes to branding. While Black Lives Matter and the ‘Me Too’ movement tackle bigger issues, they indicate a need for change at a social level, including within businesses. This involves making sure that different ethnicities, genders, sexualities, and disabilities are not only supported by your business but represented in your branding. More than anything, customers want to be able to make choices and be offered a personalised experience, without exclusion (Deloitte).
Create a sense of community
The events of the pandemic and global warming have caused customers to crave a sense of community, whether that’s sharing experiences with others in a social way or feeling as though they are pulling together towards a common cause. Businesses should aim to be part of this sense of community, highlighting how you can benefit not just the customer but their wider circle. Businesses are also advised to focus on ‘sparking joy’ rather than using a sombre tone when it comes to branding (Forbes).
Rethink your logo and slogan
It’s always good to review your logo and slogan to see if you can bring them up to date, but in 2022 it’s especially important. After the events of the past few years, there are more businesses online than ever before so it’s increasingly vital that your branding is as eye-catching and informative as possible to stand out within the densely populated e-commerce sector.
Simple logos are more memorable, so to ensure you keep getting seen, you could pare back your design. But you should also try to look at your logo and slogan with fresh eyes and consider whether it tells you everything you need to know about your brand — what you sell, who you are for, what sets you apart.
It can help to look at some of your competitors to see if you can spot common themes, including colours and imagery that you can use as inspiration for your own logo. Carefully choose who you want to be associated with, then use market research to see how your logo is being perceived. If the two don’t match up, you may need a new logo.
This is particularly important if you’re working on improving sustainability and need your customers to know it’s a new area of focus — by incorporating more natural elements and colours, you can get that message across quickly.
Go behind the scenes
Don’t forget that company culture can be a huge driving force behind your brand. Customers want authenticity, so your marketing should include highlighting the areas of your business that set you apart (Economic Times). From your factory floor to your head office, look for opportunities to provide evidence of your sustainability, diversity, and community at every step. Social media is ideal for getting these ‘behind-the-scenes’ type posts out there, and as the majority of transaction take place online, it’s easy for clicks to turn into conversions.
Marketing your company culture will not only help convince your customers to continue to use your business, but it may even attract new custom too as they’re constantly looking for businesses more in line with their own principles.
These tips can help you assess your branding and decide how to bring it up to date for 2022. Focussing on the right themes, reflecting those in your logo and slogan, and incorporating company culture into your brand can all make a difference, so give them a go.