For businesses, brand consistency focuses on building consumer trust and loyalty via messages that are always in alignment with their identity and values. When this is maintained over a period of time, brand consistency leads to brand recognition and competitive advantage.
Brand consistency does not discriminate on the nature of marketing messages so long as some aspects of the message are recurrent. This may include the tone of voice, certain graphical elements, slogans, or the consistent application of a brand’s values to real-world situations.
To better understand this concept, we have included some examples of brand consistency in the following sections.
Brand consistency examples
Netflix promotes its brand across multiple channels with quotes from famous movies and television shows in a way that is fun, energetic, and sometimes even self-deprecating.
The Netflix brand has managed to stay remarkably consistent as the company has transformed from a mail-order DVD rental service to a video streaming platform and now a movie and television show producer.
Starbucks achieves remarkable brand consistency despite operating almost 33,000 stores around the world. After suffering a sales slump in 2011, decision-makers instituted some major changes to the company’s logo.
Perhaps counterintuitively, the words “Starbucks” and “Coffee” were removed from the logo. This move coincided with a new line of Starbucks merchandise such as coffee mugs and shirts. Both initiatives showed consumers that the company had a clear intention to offer a wider range of non-coffee-based products. It also showed that Starbucks had enough confidence in its brand that the famous Starbucks Siren could easily be recognized on her own.
The simplified logo which appeared on all company products increased the brand’s visual identity and made it stronger as a result. With a consistent brand and access to a larger target audience, the company’s stock price tripled in the months after the rebranding was launched.
Dutch brewing company Heineken is notable for its event-based marketing campaigns characterized by high production value. These campaigns tend to target younger consumers with a busy social life using sports, music, and innovative graphics that reinforce the brand’s green color palette and a distinctive red star.
When founder Gerard Heineken brewed the first Heineken beer in 1873, he established a commitment to quality that persists almost 150 years later. This level of consistency means consumers know what to expect when they purchase Heineken products.
Heineken himself also realized early on that beer was a social product and that the easiest way to make friends with a stranger was to buy them a drink. To that end, he focused on selling the Heineken brand rather than the pilsener beer contained in each bottle. This approach to marketing, which continues to this day, allows the company to promote universal values of friendship, social status, and a good time to a global audience of beer drinkers.
- Brand consistency is the ability of a brand to market itself in a way that is consistent with its identity, values, and overall strategy.
- Netflix has found a way to consistently promote its brand despite wholesale changes to its business model and the wider industry. Starbucks simplified its green and white logo to promote its coffee and non-coffee-related products. The company’s high brand equity and consistent messaging were such that the removal of two important words from the logo made its brand even more recognizable.
- Dutch brand Heineken made a commitment to quality that it has honored for more than a century. Founder Gerard Heineken also realized the importance of promoting Heineken as a brand that appealed to universal consumer values such as friendship, social status, and fun.