When used together, these three essentials create a strong, cohesive brand that is:
- Correctly positioned to align with the expectations and needs of pet parents
- Represented by a visual identity that aptly characterizes its promises
- Communicated in a way that resonates and engages
The first step in selling your pet product or service is finding the people who want to buy it. Keep in mind that a customer is never just buying a product. They are purchasing a solution to a need they have for their pet.
Once you understand the real problem, you can start developing a persona around your target customer. This will help in creating messaging that truly resonates with her:
- Who is she?
- What does she like to do?
- What does her life look like?
The next step is an analysis of the competitive landscape. Ask yourself:
- Who’s playing in this sector of the pet industry?
- What are they offering?
- Where are they dropping the ball?
- How is your solution any different from what’s currently being offered?
Understanding who your target customer is, what they are really buying from you and the other solutions you’re competing with, you can create a positioning statement.
This sets the groundwork for your messaging, marketing strategy and future product development strategy.
Finding success in the pet industry is all about emotional connections – the one between pet and owner, and between owner and brand.
Now that you have established your position, it’s time to tell a story that establishes and nurtures the emotional connection that is required for brand preference.
At the core of your brand are the values that it upholds, the promises it makes, and the connections it engenders. You must define the principles your brand is built on and create a personality that people can connect with. When applied to your messaging, this personality and tone will help convey the promise your brand holds.
Stake your claim in the marketplace with these message elements:
Brand story: explains why you exist, what you believe in, and why your customer should believe in you. This backstory should ideally begin with that first innovative spark that started it all and end with an aspiration of what you want the brand to provide in the future.
Brand promise: a statement of what you will deliver to your customers time and time again. This should be built from the positioning statement you have already developed.
Differentiating statements: round out your communications by defining what makes you different from every other solution provider out there.
Everything about consumer shopping and decision making in today’s marketplace is determined, at least initially, by first impressions.
What does your visual identity say to a consumer who has zero history with your brand? Your brand’s name, logo, color palette, mood board and full visual identity have everything to do with how effectively you connect with your pet parents and how well you make a first impression.
This is where you wrap up everything you have created for your brand and tie it with a bow. Your visual identity should represent your brand’s values, position, promise and personality.
Graphics and images play a huge role in communication. Do not overlook the importance of creating the right look for your brand.
A brand platform is essential to the success of any pet product or service. Invest in this foundation and at the end of this process you will have a pet brand that customers can relate to and messaging that elevates you above the fray.
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