Six Steps To The Perfect Brand Strategy (The Ultimate Free Template)

May 19, 2024

Grab your controller and get ready to level up your marketing game with ReferralHero. From multiplayer campaigns to high-score referrals, we’ve got all the cheat codes to boost your business to the next level. 

When you hear “brand strategy”, what comes to mind? It could be any number of things, including understanding your target market, deciding on your brand visuals, and setting up KPIs for your growth. 

It’s nearly impossible to create and sustain growth without a strategy in place, and you’re likely going to need to revamp it for different stages of your business. This can get complicated, as a strategy includes a wild amount of moving parts. 

With this free template, you can ensure that every facet of your brand strategy is accounted for. From goal setting to implementation, we can walk you through the necessary steps and check them off as you go. Let’s get started! 

Step One: Defining Your Brand

As your company grows and shifts, so will your brand identity. Make sure you have answers to the following questions before you start to build out the rest of your strategy. 

Core Values

Remember, consumers want to know what you value. Over 60% of customers focus on buying from companies that reflect their values.  

  • What are the foundational principles that guide your brand's decision-making and actions?
  • How do these core values reflect your brand's identity and commitment to stakeholders?

Mission Statement

Take a look at the “why” of your company beyond making money. 

  • What is the purpose and reason for the existence of your brand?
  • How does your mission statement align with the needs and expectations of your target audience?

Vision Statement

Don’t just focus on the present. Create a plan for the future of your brand as well. 

  • What is the desired future state or outcome that your brand aims to achieve?
  • How does your vision statement inspire and motivate your stakeholders toward a common goal?

SWOT Analysis

SWOT allows you to take an objective look at how your brand can accomplish its goals. You need to examine both your internal and external positioning. 

  • Strengths - Internal factors that contribute to your brand's success
  • Weaknesses - Internal factors that hinder your brand's growth and performance
  • Opportunities - Outside circumstances that you can capitalize on
  • Threats - Risks and challenges to your brand's sustainability and competitiveness

Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

Define the major factors that set you apart from other brands within your niche. 

  • What makes your brand stand out from competitors in the market?
  • How does your USP resonate with your target audience and address their needs or pain points?

Step Two: Identifying Your Target Audience

Knowing the specifics about who you’re marketing to will ensure you use your resources effectively. Imagine your ideal customer and answer the following questions for them. 

You may have more than one audience segment, in which case you should fill out a separate breakdown for each. 

Audience Demographics

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Income
  • Location 

Audience Psychographics 

  • Interests 
  • Values 
  • Lifestyle 

Audience Behaviours 

  • Buying Habits
  • Online Activity 
  • Engagement 

Audience Needs 

  • What are the key pain points and needs of your target audience? 
  • How does your brand address these pain points? 
  • Are there ways you can improve your product or service to better fit these needs? 

Audience Engagement KPIs

How will you measure the success of your efforts in targeting and reaching your ideal customers? Here are a few KPIs to consider. 

  • Conversion Rate
  • Customer Engagement 
  • Website Traffic 
  • Cost Per Lead 

Choose clear, measurable KPIs to help keep your marketing on track. These should be unique to your brand positioning. 

Step Three: Developing Your Brand Positioning 

Your brand does not exist within a vacuum. You must understand the role you wish to fulfill within your niche. This requires market research and attention to detail. 

Brand Positioning Statement 

Create a single sentence or paragraph that your team can return to when making decisions or selling your brand. It should answer the following questions. 

  • What is your brand's unique value proposition?
  • How does your brand differentiate itself from competitors?
  • Who is your target audience and what do they care about most?

Competitive Analysis

Ensure your team and your customers understand how you are different than other companies in your sphere. 

  • Who are your main competitors in the marketplace?
  • What are their strengths and weaknesses compared to your brand?
  • How can you capitalize on opportunities to stand out from competitors?

Alignment with Target Audience

Bring forward your research about your target audience and ensure it aligns with your brand positioning. 

  • What are your target audience's preferences and values?
  • How does your brand's positioning align with these preferences?
  • What strategies can you implement to further resonate with your target audience?

Step Four: Establishing Brand Guidelines

Having a clear brand identity helps you stand out from your competitors, encourages brand loyalty, and boosts your reach. No brand strategy is complete without clear guidelines for presenting your brand. 

Logo Usage

  • What is the approved logo for your business?
  • Are there any restrictions on how the logo can be used?
  • How should the logo be sized and positioned on different materials?

Color Palettes

  • What are the primary and secondary brand colors?
  • Are there specific color codes that should be used for consistency?
  • How should colors be used in different marketing materials and designs?

Typography

  • What are the approved fonts for headings and body text?
  • Are there specific font styles that should be avoided?
  • How should typography be used to maintain brand consistency?

Imagery

  • What types of images are appropriate for your brand?
  • Do you have a preferred style or theme for imagery?
  • Are there any guidelines for sourcing or creating images for your brand?

Tone of Voice

  • How would you describe the tone of voice for your brand (e.g. friendly, professional, casual)?
  • Are there specific words or phrases that should be used to communicate your brand message?
  • How should the tone of voice be adapted for different communication channels (e.g. social media, customer service)?

Messaging

  • What key messages should be communicated in all branding and marketing materials?
  • Are there any specific brand values or mission statements that should be included in messaging?
  • How should messaging be tailored for different target audiences or customer segments?

Accessibility

  • How will brand guidelines be distributed to all team members and stakeholders?
  • Are there any training or resources available to help team members understand and follow brand guidelines?
  • How will brand consistency be monitored and maintained over time?

Step Five: Creating a Brand Strategy Roadmap

Now that you understand your brand and the role it plays in the marketplace, it’s time to make an actionable growth plan. This roadmap shouldn’t just have your goals, but specifics about how you will achieve them, and who is responsible for what. 

Brand Goals and Objectives

  • What are your short-term brand goals (6-12 months)?
  • What are your long-term brand goals (1-3 years)?
  • How will achieving these goals impact your business?

Key Initiatives

  • What specific actions are needed to achieve each brand goal?
  • Are there any key milestones that need to be reached along the way?
  • How will these initiatives differentiate your brand from competitors?

Responsibilities

  • Who will be responsible for leading each initiative?
  • Are there any team members or external partners who will be involved?
  • How will accountability be established and monitored?

Timelines

  • What is the timeline for each initiative?
  • Are there any dependencies that could impact the overall timeline?
  • How will progress be tracked and reported on?

Resources

  • What resources (budget, manpower, etc.) will be needed to support each initiative?
  • Are there any potential challenges or constraints that could affect resource allocation?
  • How can resources be optimized to ensure successful implementation?

Step Six: Implementing Your Brand Strategy 

How you actually implement your strategy will depend heavily on your company and what you’re trying to accomplish. However, there are a few considerations to keep in mind for every facet of your operation. 

Marketing Campaigns

  • Are your marketing campaigns aligned with your brand strategy and values?
  • How can you better incorporate your brand messaging and visuals into your marketing campaigns?
  • Have you analyzed the performance of your current marketing campaigns to determine if they are effectively communicating your brand to your target audience?

Advertising 

  • How are you integrating your brand strategy into your advertising efforts?
  • Are your advertisements consistent with your brand messaging and visuals?

Social Media

  • How are you using social media to communicate your brand to your audience?
  • Are your social media posts consistent with your brand's tone and voice?
  • Does the platform and style you use align with how your target audience uses social media? 
  • What can you do to encourage sharing and engagement? 

Packaging

  • Does your product packaging reflect your brand's identity and values?
  • Have you received feedback from customers about your packaging? 

Customer Service

  • Are your customer service interactions in line with your brand's values and messaging?
  • How can your customer service representatives better embody your brand's tone and voice?
  • Are your customers able to contact customer service in a way that works for them? 

The Bottom Line

This template can help you streamline your planning process. You can rest assured that you won’t miss any important factor in your brand strategy. 

However, your company is going to have its own unique needs. Take this as a jumping-off point, and expand it to encompass your brand in all its fullness. Don't let the complexity of brand strategy overwhelm you - take advantage of this resource and set your business up for success.

Ready to 10x your software platform, mobile app, or web3 company with our automated growth engine?

In just 14 days, we help you build the same waitlist, contest, or referral program used to launch and scale Airbnb, Uber, PayPal, and 1000s of other businesses. Start your ReferralHero free trial today.

May 19, 2024

Grab your controller and get ready to level up your marketing game with ReferralHero. From multiplayer campaigns to high-score referrals, we’ve got all the cheat codes to boost your business to the next level. 

When you hear “brand strategy”, what comes to mind? It could be any number of things, including understanding your target market, deciding on your brand visuals, and setting up KPIs for your growth. 

It’s nearly impossible to create and sustain growth without a strategy in place, and you’re likely going to need to revamp it for different stages of your business. This can get complicated, as a strategy includes a wild amount of moving parts. 

With this free template, you can ensure that every facet of your brand strategy is accounted for. From goal setting to implementation, we can walk you through the necessary steps and check them off as you go. Let’s get started! 

Step One: Defining Your Brand

As your company grows and shifts, so will your brand identity. Make sure you have answers to the following questions before you start to build out the rest of your strategy. 

Core Values

Remember, consumers want to know what you value. Over 60% of customers focus on buying from companies that reflect their values.  

  • What are the foundational principles that guide your brand's decision-making and actions?
  • How do these core values reflect your brand's identity and commitment to stakeholders?

Mission Statement

Take a look at the “why” of your company beyond making money. 

  • What is the purpose and reason for the existence of your brand?
  • How does your mission statement align with the needs and expectations of your target audience?

Vision Statement

Don’t just focus on the present. Create a plan for the future of your brand as well. 

  • What is the desired future state or outcome that your brand aims to achieve?
  • How does your vision statement inspire and motivate your stakeholders toward a common goal?

SWOT Analysis

SWOT allows you to take an objective look at how your brand can accomplish its goals. You need to examine both your internal and external positioning. 

  • Strengths - Internal factors that contribute to your brand's success
  • Weaknesses - Internal factors that hinder your brand's growth and performance
  • Opportunities - Outside circumstances that you can capitalize on
  • Threats - Risks and challenges to your brand's sustainability and competitiveness

Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

Define the major factors that set you apart from other brands within your niche. 

  • What makes your brand stand out from competitors in the market?
  • How does your USP resonate with your target audience and address their needs or pain points?

Step Two: Identifying Your Target Audience

Knowing the specifics about who you’re marketing to will ensure you use your resources effectively. Imagine your ideal customer and answer the following questions for them. 

You may have more than one audience segment, in which case you should fill out a separate breakdown for each. 

Audience Demographics

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Income
  • Location 

Audience Psychographics 

  • Interests 
  • Values 
  • Lifestyle 

Audience Behaviours 

  • Buying Habits
  • Online Activity 
  • Engagement 

Audience Needs 

  • What are the key pain points and needs of your target audience? 
  • How does your brand address these pain points? 
  • Are there ways you can improve your product or service to better fit these needs? 

Audience Engagement KPIs

How will you measure the success of your efforts in targeting and reaching your ideal customers? Here are a few KPIs to consider. 

  • Conversion Rate
  • Customer Engagement 
  • Website Traffic 
  • Cost Per Lead 

Choose clear, measurable KPIs to help keep your marketing on track. These should be unique to your brand positioning. 

Step Three: Developing Your Brand Positioning 

Your brand does not exist within a vacuum. You must understand the role you wish to fulfill within your niche. This requires market research and attention to detail. 

Brand Positioning Statement 

Create a single sentence or paragraph that your team can return to when making decisions or selling your brand. It should answer the following questions. 

  • What is your brand's unique value proposition?
  • How does your brand differentiate itself from competitors?
  • Who is your target audience and what do they care about most?

Competitive Analysis

Ensure your team and your customers understand how you are different than other companies in your sphere. 

  • Who are your main competitors in the marketplace?
  • What are their strengths and weaknesses compared to your brand?
  • How can you capitalize on opportunities to stand out from competitors?

Alignment with Target Audience

Bring forward your research about your target audience and ensure it aligns with your brand positioning. 

  • What are your target audience's preferences and values?
  • How does your brand's positioning align with these preferences?
  • What strategies can you implement to further resonate with your target audience?

Step Four: Establishing Brand Guidelines

Having a clear brand identity helps you stand out from your competitors, encourages brand loyalty, and boosts your reach. No brand strategy is complete without clear guidelines for presenting your brand. 

Logo Usage

  • What is the approved logo for your business?
  • Are there any restrictions on how the logo can be used?
  • How should the logo be sized and positioned on different materials?

Color Palettes

  • What are the primary and secondary brand colors?
  • Are there specific color codes that should be used for consistency?
  • How should colors be used in different marketing materials and designs?

Typography

  • What are the approved fonts for headings and body text?
  • Are there specific font styles that should be avoided?
  • How should typography be used to maintain brand consistency?

Imagery

  • What types of images are appropriate for your brand?
  • Do you have a preferred style or theme for imagery?
  • Are there any guidelines for sourcing or creating images for your brand?

Tone of Voice

  • How would you describe the tone of voice for your brand (e.g. friendly, professional, casual)?
  • Are there specific words or phrases that should be used to communicate your brand message?
  • How should the tone of voice be adapted for different communication channels (e.g. social media, customer service)?

Messaging

  • What key messages should be communicated in all branding and marketing materials?
  • Are there any specific brand values or mission statements that should be included in messaging?
  • How should messaging be tailored for different target audiences or customer segments?

Accessibility

  • How will brand guidelines be distributed to all team members and stakeholders?
  • Are there any training or resources available to help team members understand and follow brand guidelines?
  • How will brand consistency be monitored and maintained over time?

Step Five: Creating a Brand Strategy Roadmap

Now that you understand your brand and the role it plays in the marketplace, it’s time to make an actionable growth plan. This roadmap shouldn’t just have your goals, but specifics about how you will achieve them, and who is responsible for what. 

Brand Goals and Objectives

  • What are your short-term brand goals (6-12 months)?
  • What are your long-term brand goals (1-3 years)?
  • How will achieving these goals impact your business?

Key Initiatives

  • What specific actions are needed to achieve each brand goal?
  • Are there any key milestones that need to be reached along the way?
  • How will these initiatives differentiate your brand from competitors?

Responsibilities

  • Who will be responsible for leading each initiative?
  • Are there any team members or external partners who will be involved?
  • How will accountability be established and monitored?

Timelines

  • What is the timeline for each initiative?
  • Are there any dependencies that could impact the overall timeline?
  • How will progress be tracked and reported on?

Resources

  • What resources (budget, manpower, etc.) will be needed to support each initiative?
  • Are there any potential challenges or constraints that could affect resource allocation?
  • How can resources be optimized to ensure successful implementation?

Step Six: Implementing Your Brand Strategy 

How you actually implement your strategy will depend heavily on your company and what you’re trying to accomplish. However, there are a few considerations to keep in mind for every facet of your operation. 

Marketing Campaigns

  • Are your marketing campaigns aligned with your brand strategy and values?
  • How can you better incorporate your brand messaging and visuals into your marketing campaigns?
  • Have you analyzed the performance of your current marketing campaigns to determine if they are effectively communicating your brand to your target audience?

Advertising 

  • How are you integrating your brand strategy into your advertising efforts?
  • Are your advertisements consistent with your brand messaging and visuals?

Social Media

  • How are you using social media to communicate your brand to your audience?
  • Are your social media posts consistent with your brand's tone and voice?
  • Does the platform and style you use align with how your target audience uses social media? 
  • What can you do to encourage sharing and engagement? 

Packaging

  • Does your product packaging reflect your brand's identity and values?
  • Have you received feedback from customers about your packaging? 

Customer Service

  • Are your customer service interactions in line with your brand's values and messaging?
  • How can your customer service representatives better embody your brand's tone and voice?
  • Are your customers able to contact customer service in a way that works for them? 

The Bottom Line

This template can help you streamline your planning process. You can rest assured that you won’t miss any important factor in your brand strategy. 

However, your company is going to have its own unique needs. Take this as a jumping-off point, and expand it to encompass your brand in all its fullness. Don't let the complexity of brand strategy overwhelm you - take advantage of this resource and set your business up for success.

Ready to 10x your software platform, mobile app, or web3 company with our automated growth engine?

In just 14 days, we help you build the same waitlist, contest, or referral program used to launch and scale Airbnb, Uber, PayPal, and 1000s of other businesses. Start your ReferralHero free trial today.

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