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The Power of Innovation in Branding

Innovation is a fundamental aspect of what makes us human, and this ‘superpower’ elevates the reach and impact of your branding to new levels. The rise of innovation has coincided with the entrepreneurial revolution, but when explicitly applied within the scope of branding, business leaders are finding just how powerful it is. Between incorporating digital marketing, optimizing innovation metrics, and leveraging design thinking (among other strategies), your company’s brand can harvest the immense value of an indispensable and dynamically growing asset. 

In this guide, our branding experts will walk you through the exciting bridge between innovation and branding and explain how you can use the synergy between the two to produce successful outcomes for your company.

What is Innovation? 

Many of us know that branding is the process of formulating a unique identity for a product or service that effectively communicates a message to potential customers while differentiating itself from other brands. It usually includes a well-integrated and cohesive set of elements, including logos, slogans, color palettes, fonts, messaging, and more. 

Innovation is the process by which new ideas turn into practical value in the world. Within business, this usually includes specific focuses such as introducing new ideas, methods, products, and ways of solving problems that improve the overall operation or future outlook of the organization. Innovation has been a topic of high interest in the business world for its ability to help startups disrupt their field and leap barriers of entry while helping older companies remain relevant and stay ahead of their competition. 

What is Brand Innovation? 

Brand innovation sits right at the crux of the above two concepts. Brand innovation is a specialized form of innovation that focuses on harnessing the power of innovation to evolve a company’s brand into a more optimized version. It is, essentially, a strategy to redefine a brand’s positioning, adapt to and stay ahead of emerging trends, and engage customers in newer and more impactful ways. It should include strategic and creative processes that introduce new and distinctive elements to a brand, transforming its identity and enhancing its perceived value in the eyes of consumers. 

Brand innovation is crucial to a business’s short—and long-term success. You may initially think that many older, highly successful brands never change their logos, so innovation isn’t that important. It is true that parts of a company’s brand include its logo and work towards achieving recognition among new and existing customers. Still, there is also so much more, and brand innovation almost always provides action steps that have nothing to do with the brand’s logo. 

The bridge between branding and innovation drives business growth by creating an upward spiral of success. On the one hand, it enables the most efficient and effective means for a company to communicate its value to customers. Still, it also sends a very clear message to consumers, regardless of the form that innovation takes: the company is customer-centric, forward-thinking, and committed to delivering high-quality, cutting-edge products or services. In 2024, positioning your company as a thought leader has never been more critical; this is precisely what brand innovation does. 

Brand Innovation Strategy

The question becomes: where to begin? Brand innovation comes down to making a viable strategy and cohesively driving well-targeted change to parts of the brand that need it most by using the most advanced tools available. Consider incorporating the following into your brand innovation strategy: 

  1. Leverage Design Thinking

Design thinking is a mindset and approach to problem-solving and innovation anchored around human-centered design. It is critical to innovate your company’s brand with your customers as the focal point, understanding their problem and desired solution and, at the same time, creatively incorporating your own presented solutions within all facets of your brand’s communication, be it visual, strategic, emotional, or otherwise. 

Clarify > Ideate > Develop > Implement

  1. Invest in Digital Marketing 

Digital marketing involves promoting a brand, including its products and services, through digital mediums. Brand innovation must harness the power of digital marketing because it is through it that any innovation can be measured, tested, and ultimately communicated to potential customers.

It helps increase reach and visibility while implementing data-driven insights that will help you understand your customers better than ever, such as with customer segmentation, browsing and purchasing habits, trend tracking, and more. The world is increasingly spending time online, and the only way to tap into the billions of individuals using the internet is to leverage digital marketing’s power. 

Digital marketing is a tool that drives innovation. Maximizing impressions, customer connections, and collaboration is the world's new currency, so investing in internal digital marketing or help through digital marketing services is a critical component to successful brand innovation. 

  1. Optimize Innovation Metrics

Innovation metrics critically support the evaluation and measurement of any brand innovation that has been implemented. Innovation metrics help to measure the depth and breadth of innovation (to evaluate the amount of investment into innovation actions), the rate and quality of innovation (to determine how much innovation is being achieved), and the ultimate success of innovation (to evaluate how and to what extent brand innovation is having an impact on the business).

What Does All Brand Innovation Have in Common? 

The above strategies will help any company create successful brand innovation, but brand innovation is not limited to those strategies alone. Keep in mind that brand innovation is a holistic and wide-reaching mode of business evolution, and the most impactful brand innovations usually have the following in common: 

  • They unify and align the brand’s identity
  • They formulate and grow a brand’s emotional connection
  • They help the brand stand out from the competition
  • They address real problems (usually customer-facing) with effective solutions 

Create Successful Brand Innovation

Companies seeking future success should never stop innovating their brand. As digital marketing experts, we’ve seen the power of brand innovation leveraged in tandem with digital transformation strategies for great success. If you’re interested in incorporating digital marketing into your own brand innovation strategy, drop us a line to see why our clients love working with us.

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