Today brands communicate and interact like never before. The voice, style and character of a strong brand are rooted in what is real and true. This is key to being authentically relevant and interesting to target customers.
At Roxburgh, we’ve successfully positioned hundreds of new home neighborhoods, master plan communities, building industry- related companies and more over the years. What we’ve discovered is that there are four critical steps in launching a brand.
We call our process F.A.C.E., and it is designed for Places. That said, this marketing approach applies to any product.
Step 1: Find Out the Facts
Start by understanding the research and the land plan. Then – take a close personal look at what the property (or product) is, its context and its competition. The entire creative team being involved in the analysis leads to a variety of perspectives based on what is real.
(TIP: We’ve found that an intense and fast immersion process leads to the most creative solutions.)
In Step 1, we build the beginning of project Buyer Profiles, Vocabulary and USPs (unique selling propositions). Your goals may vary, but make sure you have concrete goals a for this Step.
Step 2: Assemble the Team in a Shared Vision
The objective of this Step is a clear shared direction. Today, the marketing team alone doesn’t just advertise and customers walk in the door. People now follow a different buying journey. Shopping begins by picking up their ‘laptop’, researching options and finding out the “real scoop”. (Recommended reading: Google’s Zero Moment of Truth)
To create a real and relevant story that engages target customers, all the disciplines that deliver the new place (product) need to be on the same page and focused squarely on the customer. From the amenity offering to the model merchandising to customer service, everyone plays a valuable role in delivering on the brand promise.
TAKEAWAY: To be effective your brand story must be real and everyone on the team needs to be committed to it.
At the end of this step, your entire creative foundation should be set and all disciplines should be ‘on-board’.
(TIP: for clarity from the start – a comprehensive creative brief covering naming, positioning and logo is extremely helpful.)
Step 3: Create the Pieces
This step is all about integrated marketing and design. Here the pieces of how the story will be shared need to be carefully crafted to powerfully convey one story shared in different, genuine ways online and offline.
From the Strategic Marketing Plan, media and social strategy, to creative campaign direction, this step provides the road map to intentionally reach sales goals.
(TIP: Select the social network(s) that make sense for your customers and participate in a way that respects the culture of the space.)
TAKEAWAY: Intentional marketing plans save time and money. Be ready to make adjustments as needed to achieve goals, but never “make it up” as you go along. This may seem painfully obvious, but when people get really busy…
Step 4: Execute. And Then Measure.
Work your plan. From websites to social programs to advertising, signage and collateral plus onsite experiences – there will be a lot of moving parts, but there needs to be one consistent story.
Give your program some time and then use a result measurement dashboard to take your program to the next level of effectiveness.
BOTTOM-LINE: Launching and marketing a brand is complex today and requires:
- – A real brand story that ties to emotions and which all disciplines support.
- – A strong plan to integrate marketing across channels.
- – A commitment to measuring results for on-going enhancement.
We’d love to hear your thoughts on launching a brand either below, or on your preferred social channel. Special thanks to Rick Fletcher for chiming in!
[shameless plug: If you’re getting ready to launch a new place, we’d love to talk with you. Give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org or (714)556-4365 . The Roxburgh Agency is physically located in Costa Mesa, California – but we work on places across North America.]