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Ask Haley: How to create a better staffing brand

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Q: Why should I keep my staffing firm’s branding consistent?

A: Have you ever gone shopping in a different location of your favorite store and found an unfamiliar layout? Nothing was where you expected, and you felt a little lost, didn’t you?

This is the essence of brand consistency. When one aspect of your brand doesn’t match another, it creates confusion…discomfort…and even distrust.

If your clients become confused by different or even conflicting marketing messages from your firm, would you be surprised if they chose another staffing vendor?

Brand consistency is critical.
Continuity is the key to differentiation. It not only avoids confusion, but it builds trust and signals reliability. It tells people that your firm is stable, and you will be there when they need your help.

Brand consistency starts with developing a solid brand identity and core marketing message. Your brand identity clearly defines your company the way you want to be seen, including your mission, vision and values. Your core  marketing message is the way you describe your firm to others. It’s your “elevator pitch;” a concise and compelling explanation of your services and key points of differentiation.

Too often, staffing firms don’t bother to define any brand identity or a core marketing message. Or if they do, it’s something vague like “we exceed our clients’ expectations” or “we provide the best candidates and service.”

When it comes to branding, generalities don’t work. A well-crafted brand will instantly separate you from the competition while demonstrating the clear value you provide to the clients you want to serve.

Once you’ve defined your brand, you have to ensure consistent delivery. How?  By painstakingly analyzing every touch point with your clients and candidates, and ensuring 100% consistency in your look and message.

It takes a lot more than just fancy fonts and colors.
Brand consistency requires more than using the same colors and visual style as your logo. Take a step back and ask yourself the following:

  • Do all your marketing materials convey the same (or a complementary) message?
  • Do they all have the same logo, colors and contact information?
  • Do you repeat the same images or style of imagery throughout your marketing?
  • Do you consistently write with the same “voice” or style of writing on your website, in your newsletter and in other marketing materials?
  • Have your sales people been trained to integrate your core marketing message into their sales communications?
  • Do all your people answer the phone the same way?
  • Does your approach to recruiting match your desired brand image?
  • If you asked everyone in your company, “What makes us different?,” would they all give you the same answer?

These are all elements of brand consistency. You need a uniform approach in tone, writing style, design and personality. You many not have crafted a specific “personality” for your business, but odds are your clients have already assigned one to you. And that’s what they are relating to and considering when they buy.

Where do you start?
While it may seem overwhelming and difficult to get under control, brand consistency can be accomplished in a few steps. These days, the most prevalent aspect of your brand is delivered through your website. Ensuring your website matches your brand identity and clearly conveys your core marketing message is a good place to start.

Next, look at your email marketing and sales collateral to ensure that it also matches your brand identity. Then, take a look at your human touch points. Are you being consistent in the way you sell and service? If not, invest more time in training.

We’re here to help!
If you need help developing your staffing firm’s brand or need help with developing consistent marketing materials, just give me a call.  I’d be happy to brainstorm some ideas with you.

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