We hear terms thrown around all time as part of the marketing jargon. Sometimes it can be frustrating when we aren’t completely sure of what they mean, and other times it is useful to have an update on the phrase and its use in the modern marketing sphere. Brand collateral is a term that is regularly used, and this blog will be your guide on what it is, how it is used, and how it can make your marketing strategy work for you.
Brand collateral can be a confusing term. Collateral has a different meaning in the marketing sphere than it does in other contexts. We often hear the word collateral used in reference to events or disasters where there is some form of extra damage or people affected. For marketing, however, you need to completely forget that image of collateral because it means something very different.
Simply put, brand collateral is the creative assets that are designed to promote your business. This can range from physical to digital. Think of the word collateral as meaning more of a grouping or collective term. It is all the things that identify your brand identity. Brand collateral should align with your brand’s strategy whilst communicating who you are and what you do to your target audience.
Brand collateral has marketing written all over it. Since it is the creative assets that promote your business and identity, the marketing element is the promotion of this. It is no use having these great creative assets without actually using them. Marketing is the promotional activity that gets your brand out there. Marketing is about how your brand collateral is perceived by prospective and current buyers. This is from the first interaction with your brand all the way through the sales process.
It takes 0.05 seconds for people to form an opinion about your brand. You have 50 milliseconds to make a good impression on your target audience. Buying something is an emotional decision. Not necessarily in the conventional sense of being moved by a product, but in the sense that people rely on their intuition when making choices about what they spend their money on.
Brand collateral means putting your identity out into the world in a way that elicits a positive response from your target audience. It is an investment in you and in them. It tells people why they should choose you.
“Your brand is a story unfolding across all customer touchpoints.”
Jonah Sachs, author, entrepreneur, and expert on storytelling and creativity
Brand collateral is such a collection of resources that you probably interact with your own collateral more often than you think. When wanting to turn your brand collateral into a tangible reserve for you to regularly use and be aware of, you need to ask yourself a few key questions.
It is as simple as taking yourself back to the questions we learn at a young age, the who, whats, wheres, when and whys. You need to ask yourself: what is our story, and how do we tell it?
Once you have answered those questions, you are now able to pool your creative assets together to best represent your brand identity.
The best examples of brand collateral are the examples that best represent a company. To look into what makes good brand collateral, it is important to first acknowledge what constitutes these creative assets that have been previously referred to.
All of the above center on the identity of your business and the service that you offer. They present the necessary information any prospective or current customer would need to know about your brand. These resources engage your target audience whilst also building trust and a positive relationship.
Some of the best examples of this in practice we likely interact with all the time:
Patagonia’s mission statement, for example, expertly summarizes who they are in such a way that encourages buyers to have a positive emotional response:
The same is seen with the TED Talks logo. There is a recognizable simplicity to it that strongly identifies who they are:
This is also found in Turtl’s email signature. All the necessary information any customer may need is found at the bottom of the email. The signature itself accurately reflects the brand identity and design:
The above examples can be used as a checklist. You can ask yourself those important questions, look at the resources available to you, and you can create your brand collateral.
Brand collateral is one of those terms that is another way of saying something. Marketing collateral is in many ways the same. It is the collection of any branded assets that promote a company’s product or service. Often people may use marketing collateral to distinguish digital services.
You may come across different variations of the term brand collateral whilst working in the marketing sphere. For example, it may be called digital marketing collateral, digital collateral, or even brand marketing collateral. The key word is the collateral part, which refers to the grouping of the creative assets. Ultimately anything that reflects the brand identity is this collateral.
Just remember, It is about being consistent, communicative, and engaging.
Have a look at Turtl’s resource on Marketing Collateral to help you further build your brand’s identity.
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