Don't be misled to think that sticking to your roots as a brand means not making changes over the years, evolve and adapt to the market as well as the expectations and changing needs of your target audience. Allowing customers to understand where you are coming from and your core principles helps them connect with you as a brand and builds trust. Holding on to that helps improve the value of your brand heritage.
Brand heritage comes with years of experience in a sector and adds authenticity, associations of depth and credibility to the value perception of your brand.
Your brand includes a set of ideas and values that people associate you with and this creates an emotional experience with your brand.
The purpose of your branding - your visual identity, is to communicate the promise your brand consistently delivers on and tell the story that creates the experience you aim to be known for.
Key tips for maintaining brand authenticity
I keep coming back to the importance of having a value statement that communicates your core values clearly but in a few sentences. Ensure that you integrate these core values into every aspect of your business. This includes how you treat your employees, handle your product development through to interactions with customers, suppliers, logistics partners etc. Communicate with transparency across all channels from your website to your social media platforms, this helps build brand trust and loyalty.
Consistency is key
Through periods of development and evolving the business make sure your efforts are consistent with your brand ethos and promise. If you remain true to your core values consistently, your audience will stay loyal as they still associate with the value perception of the brand and they understand your purpose. As long as that is prominent you can carefully refresh or update elements of your visual identity and still maintain brand authenticity.
If you are passionate about your products then authenticity shows through naturally. Keep building innovative and passionate brand stories. Your audience will expect you to be innovative and take them on a journey to help them solve problems and satisfy needs they may not even know they have until they see your products.
Keep listening and responding to your customer feedback and genuinely engage with their needs. We keep buying from brands if we have a good experience, our value expectations have been met and if we feel they consistently have what we need/they listen and they understand what we need, so we are happy to be led by new ideas they bring out.
Stick to your roots, but look ahead, listen, feel, be flexible and evolve with time!