Branding is an essential aspect of your marketing strategy. If you develop an awesome branding strategy, people will get to know your brand, your company, and your website. In this post, I will first explain what branding is and why it can help you with your SEO. After that, I’ll give 5 practical tips you can use to improve your own branding strategy.
What is branding?
Branding is the process of creating a clear, unique image of your product or your company. Your audience should be able to recognize your brand. Whether it is a post on Facebook, your newsletter or the product section on your website, the image of your brand should be uniform.
Branding is hard. In order to set up a successful branding strategy, you should first have a clear vision in mind what your brand is about: What is your mission? What values are important? Which style fits your brand (formal/informal)? What does your preferred audience look like?
Why is branding important for SEO?
If you set up a high-quality branding strategy, optimizing your site for search engines will become much easier. It increases the chances that your preferred audience will get to know your brand name. Your brand name could then become an incentive to click on your link in the search results (even if you’re not in the top three!). And, if you do your branding really well, people will start searching for your brand as well. It’ll be far easier to rank for your brand, than for a lot of other search terms.
In order to help you to set up a successful branding strategy yourself, I will share 5 practical tips:
Tip 1: Stay consistent
The most important thing when it comes to branding is to stay consistent. Develop a certain style and stick with it! Design a logo, and stick with it! Phrase your mission and stick with it! If you are consistent in the way you present your brand to your audience, people will eventually start to remember and to recognize your brand.
Tip 2: Phrase a tagline and make it visible
Your tagline phrases the most important message about your brand or your product in a single sentence. Make sure it stands out on your website. You can, for instance, place a tagline below your brand name. The tagline of Yoast is: SEO for everyone.
If possible, try to make your taglines clear and appealing, and have a clear picture of your audience as you’re deciding on your tagline. Use a few words to clearly describe what your site’s all about. It can help to use verbs and sentences that imply an action for the visitor, to activate them. Depending on your site and business, you could also decide to show your personality in your tagline, for instance using wordplay or a pun to make it catchy (keep it clear and don’t overdo it, though).
Tip 3: Use images
Images are a very important aspect of your branding strategy. You can use pictures and illustrations on your website, in your newsletter, on Facebook or in (printed) advertisements. Of course, you should make sure your images fit your brand. If you sell ballet shoes, you should probably not use pictures of wild animals in the jungle. You’ll want to use pictures that express elegance and grace.
If you consistently pick illustrations and photos that fit your brand, your audience will eventually recognize and remember your brand from simply looking at your pictures. At Yoast, we work with two illustrators in order to make unique illustrations that give the Yoast feel to our audience.
If you use your own photos, you could try to develop a consistent style. You can, for instance, make sure all your pictures have the same dimensions, use a similar way of editing or use similar pictures. For example, when sharing posts on Facebook, we always put a text bar on our images. We include the title of our post and the Yoast writer of the post author. That ensures consistency for all of our Facebook posts.
Tip 4: Use your brand name
Make sure your brand name will become familiar to your audience. That means you should use that brand name! Perhaps you can use your brand name in one of your products like we do in Yoast SEO. Make sure to use your brand name in your newsletter and in your (Facebook) posts. People should hear and read your brand name regularly!
Tip 5: Use your logo
Your logo is of great importance to your branding strategy. Branding is more than designing an awesome logo, though (that’s why this is the final tip and not the first one I share). Ideally, your logo should stand out. It should be something people recognize without any context. Designing a logo doesn’t have to be too expensive. Go check out 99designs for instance!
Once you have a kickass logo, make sure to use it! Present it to your audience: on your website, in your newsletter, on Facebook: everywhere! Don’t forget to use it as favicon for your website. A while ago, Google added favicons to mobile search results. It has been experimenting with showing them for desktop results, too. You can imagine it’s good for your visibility if your logo is included in the results pages, as favicon.
The colors you choose for your logo are of great importance as well. Make sure to use these colors consistently: in your newsletter, on your website, in images. If you use the same colors everywhere, they’ll become part of your brand. People will recognize your brand simply by looking at the colors in your newsletter or in your Facebook post.
If you develop a successful branding strategy, people will remember and recognize your brand. In the long run, your logo or brand name will be something that immediately evokes (positive) emotions. As people get more familiar with your brand, your SEO will get easier as well. Therefore, combining your SEO strategy with an awesome branding strategy is the way to go!
Read more: Positioning your shop in the online market »