As you move forward with your branding efforts, into the year 2015, you’re surely wondering what the year will bring for your brand. Of course, with a solid branding strategy and plenty of research into your target audience, you’ll set yourself up for success; however, there’s more. With a forecast from branding experts, you can get a jump on consumer preferences, which will only help your brand’s cause.
Projected Branding Trends for 2015
Your brand’s audience is unique, with its own problems to solve, preferences, needs, and wants; however, the consuming community, as a whole, does share some commonalities. Staying abreast of trend developments – as defined by consumer demands and preferences – will not only help you to better serve your clients, it will define your brand as cutting-edge among consumers and competitors alike.
So what do the branding experts at How to Build a Brand predict for 2015? What branding trends do we foresee? We’re so glad you’ve asked. Here are our top 10 branding trend predictions for 2015:
- A Love/Hate Relationship with Technology: Ask most consumers about any digital platform, like Facebook for instance, and you’ll likely sense some mixed emotions. They love it for keeping them connected. They hate it for intruding into their personal lives and for acting as the greatest time-suck since sit-com television. Dig deeply into the partiality of your brand’s target audience and furnish your branding strategy to either foster that love…or to combat that hate.
- Anonymity Cravings: Along with that love/hate relationship with technology comes an ‘I want it all’ attitude. In 2015, consumers want all the attentive service and accommodations that come along with personal relationships; however, they don’t want to give up all their personal data. This isn’t surprising, particularly when you consider all the data breaches that have been in the news lately; as well as all the news about brands being rewarded for focussing on individuals. So what should your brand do? Study your target audience closely. Figure out, with real data, what’s most important to them and find ways to get close without asking for more information than is absolutely necessary for contact.
- The Rewarding of Impatience: Because today’s consumer wants everything quickly, brands have scurried to make NOW a brand benefit. And because consumers are now basking in the glow of immediate service, products, shipping, etc., they are demanding more of the same. What does this mean for your brand? It means that finding ways to manufacture and deliver more quickly (without sacrificing customer service, quality, or your corporate values) and with less hassle for the consumer will be in the best interest of your brand’s success.
- A Need for More than Words: In recent years, consumers have largely opted for experiences over empty words. They want something to remember; something to prove to them that your brand can positively affect (or change) their lives. Now, more than ever, they’re looking for those branded experiences. This means your brand will need to get out there, be innovative about making memories and touching lives, and do it all with its visual brand identity as a staple ingredient.
- Mobile as a Must: We’ve said it in years past, but now, the need for making your brand mobile simply cannot be avoided. If your brand’s website is not reflexive, or if you have not invested in a mobile app, we would suggest jumping on that bandwagon sooner rather than later. Remember that today’s consumer is on-the-go; meaning that even if your ideal client once spent time at the home computer, the chances of that persisting are dwindling. If your brand is not easily accessible in a mobile manner, you could feel the sting in 2015.
- An Appetite for the Visual: If a picture once spoke a thousand words, it’s now more like a million. Branded visuals (colours, lines, fonts, logos), as well as the photos and graphics that complement your brand’s message, will prove to be the elements that your ideal client most readily remembers. Create and choose them wisely – they will be the cement that captures long-lasting (and lucrative) consumer memories.
- The Here-and-Now: Only a few years ago, marketing focus was placed on saving the planet, our money, our culture…now, it’s more about living in the moment, in a mindfully present state. Keep this ‘in mind’ when updating your branding strategy for 2015. How can your brand make consumers’ lives better, in the present moment?
- Emotional Connectivity: We all know that establishing an emotional connection is crucial to gaining the business of your ideal client; however, did you know that in 2015, you’ll be expected to connect, emotionally, in a more individual manner? Let’s look at it this way: Maybe a key emotion for your target audience is excitement – they thrive on a rush of adrenaline. That’s great, but what about the specific excitement preferences of each member of that audience? Now is the time to establish a system for learning about those preferences and delivering on them, because 2015’s consumer wants to know that your brand recognizes and caters to him, personally.
- Human Element: With recent technological advancements, it can be easy to forget about the importance of human connections. Infuse your branding strategy with plans for maintaining old-fashioned human conversation and you’ll give modern consumers the best of both worlds, which is what they’re really craving.
- Distaste for Perfection: Another essentially human trait is wanting to see the flaws in others – so that we can more easily accept the flaws in ourselves. Domino’s Pizza made a bold move in 2014 when it admitted that it had made mistakes with past pizza recipes and that it was moving forward with new and better ideas. What did this do for the Domino’s brand? It endeared it to consumers, and the brand is bigger than ever. Use your brand’s imperfections to your advantage. Focus on your brand’s strengths. Own its flaws. And deliver what is most important to your ideal client.
2015 has already begun, but it’s not too late to align your branding strategy with the inclinations of the modern consumer. We’d love to answer your questions and to continue this conversation. Simply email us at [email protected] or join the discussion on Twitter.