Is Your Brand Memorable?

The Logo board game

Happy Spring Break! However, for those of you in the Chicagoland area, it doesn’t feel like much of a spring break…as we continue to adorn ourselves with winter coats, hats and brave the chilly 30 degree weather! So, with temperatures far from ideal, I spent a good part of my time-off at a lake house… playing board games indoors with my family.

One of the board games that we played is called The LOGO Board Game. For those of you unfamiliar, it is a self-proclaimed: “Board Game about the Brands You Love!” And being in marketing, I have to admit that I do kind of love the game and all it stands for. After playing a few rounds, easily answering some of the questions and getting stumped on others, it inspired me to write this blog… Is Your Brand Memorable?

As you play, the game challenges you to recall key attributes of well-known, long lasting and impactful brands…many of which became industry leaders and persevered over decades. From catchy slogans to prominent colors and celebrity spokespeople to unique packaging choices, the game demands players to recall why the brand in question was so special.

To determine whether your company is doing all it can to make your brands/products/services both special and memorable, let’s review a few of The Logo Board Game questions to see how you measure up:

            (1) What color is the deer in the John Deere tractor logo?
The John Deere brand identity has actually exploded beyond farm equipment.                     From Midwestern country boys to urban trend setters, young men can be found                 sporting John Deere t-shirts and hats bearing this iconic yellow “leaping deer” logo             which was first unveiled in 2000. John Deere states that the logo’s “sharpened                   antlers, angles, muscularity and attitude give the trademark an energized and                     dynamic edge….as it takes a strong upward leap into the new millennium.”

If your company colors are red and blue, then your marketing materials, signage, trucks and more should be….red and blue. Maintaining a consistent color scheme is a critical part of creating brand awareness. We recommend you use a strong symbol to represent who you are – it could be modified over time, as life and technology change, but the image should remain somewhat constant to create a direct visual link with your company. If you are using multiple colors and symbols, and not sticking to predetermined brand guidelines… people will not be able to make a strong association with your brand.

            (2) Which credit card logo features two intersecting circles?
Regardless of the numerous credit card designs, varying rewards programs, and multitude of co-branded cards available…the iconic intersecting circle logo of MasterCard is a well-known agreement between two parties representing a secure method of payment. MasterCard itself states “The MasterCard®, Maestro®, and Cirrus® Brand Marks are among the most recognizable consumer brands in the world. Maintaining and extending that recognition requires consistent presentation of the MasterCard family of brands in all media and at all times.”

Do you prominently display your logo on all of your marketing materials? If you work with partner vendors, do you also ask that they show your logo in association with your company? Your logo is a key component of your branding. It is a visual representation of your brand, part of your identity that should be proudly displayed in conjunction with your company name in all marketing channels, on promotional items and within print collateral. The more often you publicize your logo, the better. It is the only way to generate and increase awareness.

            (3) Complete the cereal Kix’s tagline: “Kid-Tested, ______”
Need a clue? The missing line from this General Mills cereal is a product benefit statement. Kix cleverly made a tagline that is not only memorable, but positions their cereal as a smart, healthy choice that parents prefer. Stating their cereal is: “Kid-Tested, Mother-Approved” worked well for all involved. The slogan was even clearly explained on the back of the box: “Kids liked the crisp corn crunch, while moms liked that Kix has 3 grams of sugar, with no added colors or flavors.”

Do you clearly, boldly highlight your brand/product’s key benefits? Sometimes hammering home a key differentiator can give you a competitive advantage and a boost in your market. It is also a fact the people are influenced by their peers so social acceptance among peers in your target audience could bode well for you in the marketplace.

            (4) “Which motel chain promises, “We’ll leave the light on for you?”
Can you hear the radio and TV commercial voice in your head as you read this poignant message (NPR commentator Tom Bodett)? This motel chain made a strong appeal to their customer’s sense of comfort — making their motel a home away from home. This campaign started in 1986 and won several national and international awards. It was such as success, that in 2012 for their 50th anniversary, Motel 6 began using the motto, “50 Years, the Light’s Still On.”

Do you have an unforgettable and consistent slogan, tagline or copy message that people can easily recall from your advertising? It doesn’t need to be earth-shattering, just relevant to your industry, your product(s) and most importantly your customers’ needs. It can be short and sweet, but it needs to have a strong appeal to your target audience’s emotions that hooks them.

So, to build a memorable brand, one that could possibly be featured as a key question in a board game years from now… it is very important to maintain consistencies across the board with your colors, logos/icons, benefit statements, and slogans/key messages. Following these tips may make a lasting and memorable impression on your target audience and beyond – everyone who is exposed to your marketing efforts. Want to learn more about how you can make your brand more memorable? Contact me: Please “Like” my blog if you found this interesting and beneficial.