With the emergence of new online platforms, businesses must understand how their branding should change to remain competitive. This means understanding how different platforms operate and what type of content resonates with users on each platform. It also involves staying up-to-date on the latest trends, aesthetics, and technologies so your brand can remain visible and engaging.
The key is creating a cohesive brand identity that can be adapted across multiple platforms while maintaining its core values. Additionally, having a well-defined brand strategy will help you stay ahead of the competition by allowing you to respond quickly and effectively to new opportunities.
Logos are an essential brand component and must be distinctive, recognizable, and adaptive to emerging platforms. The logo should be simple enough to work across all platforms and look good on all devices and displays — from websites to mobile apps, social media ads, Twitter headers, and GIF banners. It must stand out without dominating the design or becoming too complex.
Look at different types of logos to inspire you, and research current logo trends to see what consumers gravitate toward.
A few examples of how to adapt your logo for emerging platforms include:
- Augmented reality (AR): Create a logo in 3D animations or motion graphics. This can look like an animated version of your logo or a 3D object created based on your brand.
- Virtual reality (VR): Design a logo you can use as a virtual marker or icon. This can look like an object in the virtual world that identifies your brand.
- Voice-activated devices: Create an audio logo — otherwise known as sonic branding — that stands out without needing visual cues. This can be something like a unique sound or voice tone. Those who are using voice-activated devices such as smart speakers will associate your brand with the sonic logo.
Deloitte reports that music streaming service Pandora has a sonic logo that emphasizes “the emotional response that can emerge from a seconds-long composition associated with the brand.” Even a short snippet of sound can have an emotional heft. Muse by Clio has a blog post about Pandora’s brand campaign where you can listen.
Themes are also integral to any brand strategy, giving customers a consistent feeling whenever they come across your branding. Focus on creating themes that fit well with emerging platforms and engage users by using innovative features, like the following:
- Metaverse: Develop a theme that works with the metaverse’s highly customizable environment. This could involve creating art pieces for virtual galleries, 3D objects for virtual stores, and custom avatars for user profiles.
- BeanVR: One of the newest VR apps that allows you to experience social media in an immersive space. If your company uses this platform, use features such as animations or 3D graphics.
- Spotify: The top music streaming service that has emerged as a place for podcasts and live audio as well; for Spotify ads, businesses should create a theme that uses sound to evoke emotion. Consider making a custom jingle that people can easily associate with your brand.
Additionally, exploring creative tips from industry experts can give you some great ideas for improving your designs quickly and efficiently.
Another key aspect of branding is audience analysis: understanding exactly who your target audience is. This becomes even more important on emerging platforms where user behaviors may vary greatly from traditional ones. By studying user data from each platform, your business can identify potential opportunities to maximize engagement and return on investment (ROI).
For instance, in 2022, almost half of all adults aged 55 and up had never heard of the metaverse, while in 2023, 51% of the metaverse user base is 13 or younger. This signals a shift in user demographics and suggests businesses should tailor their marketing messages.
However, emerging app BeReal’s user base consists of an almost even split between 16 to 25-year-olds and 26 to 44-year-olds. BeReal branding must equally address both age groups while considering their different interests and motivations.
To help you find and target the right audience, consider using in-app analytics or tracking tools that gather user behavior data. These can give you detailed insights into demographics, interests, behaviors, spending preferences, and language use.
Search engine optimization plays an increasingly critical role in successful branding campaigns today — this doesn’t change on emerging platforms, either. If businesses are leveraging artificial intelligence to optimize campaigns and content, they should focus on optimizing keywords around what customers would search for when looking for a particular service or product.
Additionally, businesses leveraging influencers to promote their brand should ensure the influencer’s content is well-optimized with keywords around the product or service. This can look like captions, hashtags, and even content descriptions and soundbites. The key is understanding each platform’s SEO techniques and optimizing your strategy accordingly.
Social Media Outreach
Social media outreach is a crucial component of brand building, although it can look different depending on your operating platform and audience.
- Younger generations are influenced by user-generated content and influencer marketing, meaning businesses should seek influencers to help promote them.
- Gen X desires brand content that is both informative and exciting. Offer them how-to videos, tutorials, and details so they can envision your brand as the best solution to their needs.
Creating an advertisement isn’t as cut-and-dried as it used to be. For example, Mastodon is a new social media platform where outreach should be non-promotional. You can establish your brand as a subject-matter expert, but ads are prohibited.
Each emerging platform will have its unique form of outreach to consider. In practice, this could look like different video content formats, live streams, audio bites, interactive content, or virtual reality experiences with strategic influencer relationships.
In addition to the aesthetic of an advertisement, businesses must think about the tone or voice they want to use for their messaging on emerging platforms.
Consider the following:
- Platforms built for younger generations may require a more casual and upbeat tone with the use of emojis, GIFs, and memes.
- Platforms designed for professional users require a more serious approach when crafting content. Consider jargon-free language, clear visuals, and concise messaging.
- For a visually dominant platform, use clear visuals and concise captions to draw in viewers.
- For audio-dominant platforms, focus on delivering content that is conversational and informative.
- For virtual platforms, create a narrative that viewers can experience by blending VR with traditional storytelling.
No matter what platform, the most important thing is to ensure your messaging and visuals accurately reflect your brand’s identity.
While brand positioning might not seem to have changed much, businesses must consider how their positioning needs to evolve in light opf newer platforms and technologies. For instance, if a company is targeting Gen Z, they may want to consider focusing on “access” — making their product or service easily accessible by leveraging digital tools such as e-commerce or subscription models.
The platform you choose to deliver your message can impact how customers perceive your brand. Emerging platforms such as VR and AR allow companies to create unique, immersive experiences that help customers form lasting impressions of a brand’s message and values.
When selecting the platform for your brand, remember who your target audience is and what kind of experience they’re looking for.
Sharing Your Brand’s Story
The way businesses tell their stories also needs to evolve if they want to remain competitive. Customers today want to connect with the brands they use and feel more in tune with brand stories. For different platforms, this can look like constantly updating stories on social media accounts or creating interactive experiences that put customers in the driver’s seat.
A great example of this is the use of augmented reality. Businesses can create interactive games, digital explorations, and visual tours to engage their customers and help them form lasting relationships with their brands.
Overall, businesses must understand how each branding component works and how it needs to evolve to remain effective on new platforms.