It concerns me many small (and some large) businesses waste marketing dollars on inconsistent marketing. Marketing consistency means customers will immediately connect with your business.
Here are some recent examples:
- The local butcher recently won an award and took out an ad in our local paper to announce this achievement. On entering the store the following day, there was no mention of the win across the front window. The award was tucked behind the cash register, almost out of sight.
- Dining in a Chinese restaurant that advertised ‘authentic Chinese’ while we ate listening to ABC talkback. Nothing authentic about that!
It’s no wonder we don’t immediately recognise the business or believe the key message.
How do we make sure our customers immediately connect to our business? It starts with marketing consistency. Marketing consistency begins with a strong brand identity and key message. The brand identity is made up of three elements – a logo (focal point), brand colour palette, and a specific type face (font style).
Let’s begin with a 4-point checklist:
1. Do you have a company logo?
Is it text only or does it include an image? Do you use the company logo in the exactly and format every time? Are there multiple formats to choose from? If so, how do you choose which one?
2. What are your company colours? (PMS and CMYK)
Are your colours consistent across all marketing material? For example, is the blue the same on your business card as it is on your website?
3. What is the key message for your business?
Is the message and branding consistent? Does your website talk about ‘one topic’ (for example, opening time of 7am-3:30pm) and your magnets ‘another’ (example 24-hour service)? Seems simple right? Why aren’t more businesses communicating a consistent message to their customers?
And you know what, it’s not just you who needs to know these rules. It’s any graphic designer you work with or any new (office) employee.
This is communicated with a style guide
A style guide is a set of standards for design or writing of documents to be followed by the entire team. It seems like a no-brainer seeing as you could simply provide the graphic designer with your logo and assume they’ll follow the colour scheme and format. Let me tell you, it’s amazing how they can ‘tweak’ your logo until it no longer looks the same. The style guide provides the boundaries on not only your company logo, but also company colours, and the key message of the business.
This style guide should be then applied consistently across all marketing tools, including:
- business cards
- email signature
- newspaper advertisement
- invoice books
- thank you cards
- building signage
- and, all other means of marketing.
Marketing consistency is one of the most important things you could do for your trade business. Without this, there is no clear brand or message, and you’ll actually be losing money by marketing instead of increasing sales! So, what are you doing to ensure your marketing is consistent?
- Join our Kick-Ass Tradies Facebook Group, for access to trade business specific conversations, tips and resources, plus a like-minded community of tradies.
- Book a 15-minute Game Plan Call with Andy, owner of Dr. DRiP plumbing and co-founder of Lifestyle Tradie, to clarify your priorities and get clear action steps.