Brand authenticity is something that we seem to hear about a lot these days, to the extent that you may have initially dismissed it as a bit of a buzzword – something that isn’t necessarily very important, or that you lack the time to think about in the running of your business.
However, it is also important to appreciate that how your organisation presents itself online is far from a frivolous matter. Being authentic is key to reassuring potential and current customers that you are what you claim to be – that your stated values and principles are backed up by your actual actions and how your business lives and breathes every day.
Authenticity, then, is crucial for building trust among your target customers, and as a consequence, a steady and loyal following of people who know you mean what you say and say what you mean. But what else do you need to know about presenting your brand authentically?
Is authenticity basically just about being yourself?
Ask this question to any provider of Internet marketing consulting services like PENNInk Productions, and they’ll say yes… and no.
After all, in the real world, there’s a bit more nuance to being authentic than simply being yourself. You wouldn’t, for example, turn up to the office or a corporate meeting in shorts or pyjamas, even if you might dress like that when you’re lounging about at home. Nor would you use swear words (or at least, we hope not) in your brand’s social media posts or marketing emails, even if you speak like that in the bar with your friends.
So, being authentic as a brand must still take place in the context of being a responsible business that respects its audiences, including clients and customers.
Consistency is a key component of presenting your brand authentically
Practising genuine authenticity across everything your brand does will naturally entail close consideration of the many other elements of successful branding.
One such element is consistency. If you wish to present your brand as authentic in what it says and does, you need to be conveying the same tone and values across all of the channels on which your brand is present, including your website, blog, social media, and marketing emails.
The obvious visual elements of your brand identity, such as its logo and colours, will also play a big role in communicating both authenticity and consistency. Your choices in this regard should be in line with the other aspects of how your organisation operates – whether your brand’s mission is prestigious and formal, or offbeat and light-hearted.
The more authentic your brand is across every aspect of what it says and does, the likelier it is to be seen as credible by the audiences that you need to attract for your firm’s survival and growth. Be human, and learn from your mistakes, but also be proud of who you are, and you will be going a long way to building the brand authenticity that is so crucial if you are to achieve success.
Are you on the lookout for Internet marketing consulting services that will aid your mission to develop authenticity and consistency for your brand? If so, our team at PENNInk Productions would be delighted to hear from you, and to discuss how we could work together.
Lisa Penn is a Visual Communications Specialist with a background in user experience and psychology. She has held a variety of roles encompassing user experience creative strategist, architect and manager, where she has successfully bridged the gap between design, technology and development.