A great brand should meet many criteria: it should not only be memorable, but it should also be likeable. It’s not enough for it to just be unique, it should also be easy to understand. And one of the most important things of all is for it to be consistent.
What do I mean by consistency? Well essentially I mean that you should be delivering the same message across all platforms and that you should be constantly reiterating this point. Your company should have one overarching goal, one set of principles and one thing for which it is known, and if you can accomplish this then you will greatly improve your chances of success.
The Importance of Consistency
So why is this so important? Well let’s imagine for a minute a company that is in no way consistent. This company might sell books about gardening for instance, but it might also sell car parts. Now this is a confusing message right away to be giving and it’s one that will make it hard for them to market. Where would such a company market themselves? And who precisely would be the main demographic? Rather than targeting one audience you’d be targeting two, and the existence of the other part of your business would only serve to confuse your customers. Likewise, who would want to invest in such a company that couldn’t seem to make their mind up about which direction they want to go and what’s important to them?
Another great example is Apple. Apple is fantastically successful and largely this comes down to their consistent message across the board. Apple is a hardware and software company, but more than that they’re a company that make high end, desirable and stylish products. People thus know what they’re going to get when they buy something from Apple, they sense that the company has integrity and they are proud to brandish that same message by using their products. In my personal opinion Apple’s move to release ‘budget’ phones such as the iPhone 5c will only weaken this consistency and damage their brand.
Either way you see the importance of having a single overarching vision. Put all your energy into heading in one direction and you’re much more likely to reach your destination.
How to Exhibit Consistency
But how precisely do you go about creating such a consistent message? Well simply this means identifying your key goals and it means thinking about your long term plans. Even if you have a range of products, all of them should work towards the same end goal and you should be able to voice this simply and easily.
This end goal should also come across in your marketing and in your brand design – so that everyone knows not just what you do, but what you’re ‘about’.
And if you do have any parts of your business that don’t fit with this overall grand vision then you don’t need to scrap them – but create an imprint of your business and consider them ‘side projects’ so as not to confuse your overall message.