4 Ways Brands Can Be Relevant

Staying relevant as a brand is of paramount importance so that people continue to subscribe to your message, engage with your content, and buy your brand. Brands that are no longer relevant face being discontinued, like the Oldsmobile models that "simply weren't distinct enough to stand out from GM's other car lines or draw younger buyers."

How can brands be relevant?

Be distinct

Brands need to offer a distinct advantage over their competition to gain share in the mind of consumers. The Oldsmobile failed to continue its distinction and resonate with younger audiences, so it was discontinued.

When brands no longer offer a unique selling proposition or sustainable competitive advantage, or there are simply to many products in the category, they can rely also on branding. Branding can help create a place in prospect's minds to differentiate them among competitors.

Be consistent

Being consistent in type of information shared and amount posted will allow people to develop their expectations about your brand, have them met, and begin to trust what you offer.

For example, a social media presence or online work should be consistent. Instagram users are particularly great at using their few characters to describe what people will get by subscribing to their photos. I follow simply.cool.design which says it will feature daily art, design and creativity. It consistently posts new designs, so I continue to subscribe to their content.

Reflect the life of your target customer

Let your topics and themes be something that resonates with your customers. It can resonate through its ability to impact their life (like helpful tips and information), through is newsworthiness, or through its emotional congruity.

Newsworthiness can be described as developing content worth talking about. It is something originally designed as an advertisement that gets a life of its own. One advertisement I actually took time to watch was the Kevin Hart and David Beckham spots for H&M. I watched them because they generated awareness and engagement on their own, and even through they were advertisements I took time to watch them.

Emotional resonance can speak to the struggles customers go through, maybe tugging at some heart strings as well. One commercial I saw over the holiday was for Fisher Price, it showcases two children playing with a toy set and the small girl has Down Syndrome. It was a well-done, subtle commercial that also reflects what life is like for some parents by showcasing inclusiveness.

Be on topic

On topic can include the time of year, a recent event, or something that is on the mind of consumers. Most people are very familiar with commercials reflecting the time of year. I know I remember all of the Coca Cola ads with the polar bears.

People may be tired of seeing a million holiday commercials over November and December, but brands can create unique advertisements that cut through the holiday clutter.

Jeep did a great job of being both newsworthy and on topic through its Veteran's Day commercial about "Old Faithful", the only vehicle to receive the Purple Heart. In the process of including their product, Jeep also thanked Veteran's for their service. Another great spot I saw over Thanksgiving offered another view on present delivery, through the perspective of Mrs. Claus.

How do you stay relevant?

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