When a brand is being marketed by dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of individual outlets, it’s all too easy for the brand image to get completely out of control. As a result, products sold exclusively through indirect channels often had an unprofessional appearance, as opposed to the slick and polished presentation buyers saw from monolithic direct-sale entities.
In today’s market, that just won’t cut it. Your indirect sales structure cannot be allowed to interfere with your attempts to create a singular image for your product. You need tactics and strategies that align marketing across all channels, anywhere in the world, to build a singular consistent brand. Here are five effective tactics for keeping your messaging aligned at all levels.
1. Choose the right partners.
Without any new technology investments or major strategic shifts, you can still do a lot to keep your brand in alignment just by picking the right partners. If a potential partner is targeting one of your core markets, and has similar overall business goals to your own, it will be much easier to keep all your marketing aligned.
2. standardize style and format documents
If you haven’t done so already, your company should have a master style sheet with accompanying graphics that covers exactly how materials related to that company are presented. There are many factors which could be covered here, but it would include:
- Official sanctioned logos, in multiple sizes and variations.
- Precise lists of acceptable colors and hues, preferably using the Pantone color system.
- Lists of fonts to be used, or attachments with official fonts if custom-made.
- Lists of words \ phrases \ concepts which should be avoided.
- A writing style guide, covering matters like vocabulary level used, casual vs professional language use, and point-of-view.
- On that last point, it’s important to be detailed, particularly where standard writing rules are hazy. Does your company use Oxford commas in promotional materials? Do you put one space or two spaces after a period? There’s no “right” answer, but these things should be standardized.
Be willing to review your partners’ marketing materials from time to time, and ensure they’re adhering to your guide!
3. Centralize Access To your marketing materials
Try to avoid allowing your partners to do too much marketing on their own. Even with a style guide, large scale campaigns should always be centralized. Look to set up a central repository where all marketing materials are deposited, so that everyone in your ecosystem can access and use materials as needed. This should cover everything from print ads to online videos.
4. Utilize local advertising automation for online advertising
Dynamic templates and geo-tag based web scripts can take a lot of the work out of creating online advertisements that are specific to a certain region. This is another way to reduce the marketing burden on your partners, as well. Why should your ecosystem collectively spend many man hours creating every possible variation on a banner ad, when you could have a single template that auto-fills in geographical or even personal information on a per-viewer basis?
5. Have an effective global communications network
Your partners, no matter where they are in the world, should all be able to communicate with you through a shared platform. This solves numerous problems at once, including the problem of how to distribute information equally throughout your ecosystem at the same time. It also helps ensure your partners always feel like they’re on equal footing with each other, if they all have equal access.
LogicBay Can Improve Your Marketing Alignment
We’ve helped global brands achieve same-day simultaneous messaging around the world, and we can help your company keep its messaging aligned as well! To learn more about our proven methodologies, just contact us for more information or a free demonstration.