Brand development is the process of bringing a brand to life through a series of different strategic stages from inception right through to promotion.
The following is a step-by-step snapshot of the key stages in the brand development process. (In tandem with this is runs the process of production/manufacturing, distribution and pricing of your new product.)
Step One: Identify the Opportunity
Is there a niche, gap in the market for your new product/service? Initial research must be carried out to ensure that there is sufficient demand for your proposition.
Step Two: Develop the Brand Blueprint
Your brand blueprint captures the essence of your brand – the business goals and vision of the brand, its core values, its character, personality and positioning. This blueprint is pivotal to the success of your brand and is a reference point with regard to everything you do – from how you and your team answer the phone to what tone of voice you use in your marketing communications.
Step Three: Brand Identity
Using your brand blueprint, this stage of the process involves creating a name and visual identity (logo, colour palette, typeface, packaging layout and communications) for your brand. This identity is then incorporated into your new pack design. This is a good time to test your prototype design in focus groups for valuable feedback before the final stage.
Step 4: Brand Launch Programme
Now you are ready to concentrate on elements such as marketing support (PR, promotions, merchandising, advertising) and your launch strategy.
Step 5: Monitor Performance
The first six to twelve months are critical in determining the success of a brand. That’s why it is important to monitor its performance closely so that any problems can be spotted and rectified as soon as possible. After this initial critical period your brand should have earned a modest following of customers who give you repeat business and help spread the word.
Note: A real working brand must always work hard to remain constantly relevant to its customers. This involves ongoing analysis, reassessment and evolution.