Building brand authenticity

Brands have never been closer yet felt so far away. Despite interaction taking just a click and communications invading our lives at every given opportunity, the increasingly digital nature of brands means fleeting engagement and a lack of tangibility. This lack of physical experience is crushing consumer confidence and their trust in brands.

Purpose has dominated the branding landscape over the last two years as the answer to bringing brands closer to consumers, but infamous purpose-gone-wrong examples such as Pepsi’s ‘Unity’ Kendall Jenner ad or Starbuck’s ‘Race Together’ campaign have shown that the pursuit of brand purpose needs to be authentic.

Authenticity is vital to having consistent customer experiences that build trust, and creating a genuine purpose and set of values that consumers can align themselves with naturally.

90% of Millennials cite brand authenticity as the most important factor when deciding which brands to support, and 20% of consumers have unfollowed a brand that posted content that felt inauthentic.*

So how do you build a brand that's authentic?

Involve your employees

Your employees are the ones responsible for delivering the brand to your customers on a day-to-day basis. They’ll be able to tell you what they deliver, how they deliver it and what motivates them to do it. This information is the blueprint for your culture, personality, TOV, and values. By involving them in the process you’ll give your employees ownership over the brand and ensure they are willing and able to deliver it consistently.

Involve your customers
It seems so obvious, but many brands don’t do it; by getting your customers’ input in the branding process you’ll discover their actual brand perceptions, and what really matters to them. Understanding what you’re customers care about means you can align your brand vision, mission, and purpose to your market. Knowing your real customer experience ensures there’s no disconnect between what your brand promises and what your brand delivers.

Align your strategy and creative
It’s no good having visuals that suggest one thing if your actual brand experience delivers another. This will immediately create confusion for customers and lead to distrust and disengagement. Your visual identity isn’t purely about looking good, it needs to bring your strategy to life. It should embody your brand personality, values, and positioning.

So there you have it, brand authenticity has never been more important and achieving it is all about building it from the inside out. If you’re worried your brand might not be up to scratch then get in touch with Orb today and see how we can help.


* Stackla Consumer Content report 2017