What is brand collateral?
It’s essentially a fancy term for branding materials. That means, anything from a website to photography, vehicle wraps and brand storytelling videos. These marketing tools are so crucial because they are a visual representation of your brand. If your materials aren’t up to par, people will judge you as less than professional and that could cost you many potential investors and customers.
First Impressions Count
In business, your branded materials are your first impression. Before making a purchase or booking a consultation, clients will often search your business online or ask for a business card. If you make the wrong first impression, it could mean those clients will never come back.
In a book called 3 seconds: The Power of Thinking Twice, Dr. Les Parrot revealed that it takes just three seconds to register a negative impression in your brain.
Surveys also reveal that bad impressions are notoriously difficult to change. In one survey conducted by Roy Morgan Research and Sevcorp, 67 per cent of respondents indicated that once they held a negative impression, they weren’t willing to give people a second chance. Which in business, could make the difference between you clinching that deal or losing out on a quality client.
Collateral Quality Matters
So how do you make a good first impression? It all begins with your marketing materials.
Businesses that are viewed as professional will often book more clients, close more sales and can command a higher price for services.
That’s due in part to the perceived value that your brand projects and your value should be communicated through all your branded materials. You just won’t be taken seriously if your brochures are printed at home or your website is poorly designed.
It’s like seeing two job applicants. They both have the same qualifications, but which one would you pick? The one that’s sloppily dressed, unsmiling, hair uncombed, with papers sticking out of their briefcase? Or the one who is impeccably dressed, put together, smiling and neatly organized?
Your brand collateral is like that. If your online or printed materials are the first things your customers see, it matters what you put out there.
And for every brand material you should also have an objective or goal in mind…
Below are just a few examples of branded materials from our portfolio…
Business Tools Should Be Backed By Strategy
Everything should look unified and should follow a similar theme and style. If not, your branding starts to look like a patchwork quilt. An assembly of confusing pieces that may not go well together, give a conflicted message, or don’t properly represent your brand or your value.
You want to strategically plan all your tools and resources. Only that way will you command respect and trust in your industry, which will lead to increased consumer confidence in your ability to deliver.
The right brand strategy can lead you to make bold, decisive plans when it comes to how you want your business to be perceived by customers. It forces you to think about your content, your visual representation and your marketing campaigns. It makes you connect the dots, so you have a clear unified picture that you can eagerly present to your most sought-after clients.
Collateral Can Be a Crucial Consumer Touch Point
The quality of the customer journey has been shown to be the greatest predictor of overall customer satisfaction. In a 2016 report, McKinsey stated that “companies that excel in delivering positive customer journeys tend to win in the market.” It even correlates to faster revenue growth.
This is why brand collateral plays such a pivotal role. Think of your materials as more than “advertising”. Think of them as tools that allow you to direct and influence the customer journey at many levels. This means that you can subtly steer a customer toward repeat sales simply by strategically planning every marketing material you own.
Branded collateral can also act as an interactive portal through which your customers can directly engage with your brand. This means your website is more than an information source. It’s a place where prospective customers can personally connect with your brand.
Think of it… That all-important connection could begin with an elegantly designed business card, that leads someone to check out your website, your videos, your portfolio and customer recommendations that lead to (you got it) sales!
Imagine your brand foundation: built for growth and future success
Unlock Access to Our E-book:
The Small Business Guide to Brand Strategy
This guide is full of information on how to create an overall brand strategy that will help you successfully market your business. It helps you craft an authentic brand story, then helps you uncover when, where and how to communicate it to your target audiences.
That’s why your brand collateral matters.
Rethinking your company’s collateral? Original Ginger specializes in helping businesses with branding strategies, brand identity packages and branded content like blogs and videos. Contact us to learn more…