Staff shortages and supply-chain issues may be temporary in the hospitality sector, but strong branding and connecting with your consumer is forever according to Anatomy Studios co-founder Matt John (pictured below)…
Another year, another round of COVID. It’s been a tough three years for all of us and who else has felt the bite of the pandemic more than the hospitality sector?
Anatomy Studios has been at the helm of the QSR and FMCG sector for over 10 years and this has been by far the most challenging time for our clients. Despite the pandemic, we’ve managed to help Australian-owned food and beverage businesses to flourish and grow to new heights.
At Anatomy, we believe in the power of the relationship between emotive branding and the consumer. If you want your brand to succeed in this unpredictable climate, you need to stand out with a strong, emotive branding strategy that taps into the consumer’s psyche. Consumers will remember how you made them feel, not by what you said.
Consumers have a huge say in the success of a brand. According to Understanding the 2021 Consumer, a recent study by Toluna, Australian consumers are increasingly choosing to shop with brands that align with their personal values, with 69 per cent of respondents reported to go out of their way to engage with brands that align with their values and 34 per cent claiming that they’ve stopped supporting brands with conflicting values.
If your brand isn’t connecting with its target audience, then chances are you’re on the chopping block. A consumer will move onto something else in a heartbeat if your brand isn’t aligned with their personal values. Brands need to stay in touch with their consumer. Is it committing to sustainable packaging? Zero plastic? Reducing food waste? Giving back to the community? Whatever it may be, you need to identify what your consumer wants and fast.
Take Roll’d Vietnamese for example. We’ve represented Australia’s (and indeed the world’s) largest Vietnamese franchise since 2014, and have seen Roll’d Vietnamese achieve incredible milestones such as opening its 112th store at the height of the pandemic. Roll’d’s exponential brand growth would not have been possible without mentoring and refining the brand story for years.
Roll’d Vietnamese is not your typical QSR restaurant. It’s a community that aspires to welcome people into a world rich of fresh and authentic flavours and traditional Vietnamese culture. At Roll’d, customers are considered like family. We’ve worked closely with Roll’d’s founder Bao Hoang to ensure that the brand continues to remain relevant and accessible to their customers. The relationship between Roll’d Vietnamese and the customer is the reason why they’ve managed to not only keep afloat in the pandemic, but also to expand the business.
Venturing into Coles, one of Australia’s leading supermarkets, is testament to Roll’d Vietnamese’s determination, its authentic brand values and connection with its customers. This is how branding agencies can leverage their client’s presence in the marketspace.
Monitoring consumer behaviour is key in keeping up with the times. It’s important to keep your brand on the pulse of the needs and wants of your consumer. The pandemic has massively changed the way we connect with our favourite brands. As we now live, work, and play exclusively in the online world, brands have had to shift their business onto online platforms to remain accessible.
Online shopping has become a huge part of our lives. In 2020, Ad News reported that eCommerce spending saw a 29 per cent increase month-on-month when lockdowns began in March 2020. We rely so much on online shopping to access everything from groceries to household goods.
The internet is king when it comes to brand engagement. We recognise how powerful an effective virtual brand strategy can be for our clients, especially when consumers have become reliant on digital services in these unpredictable times. Executing strong virtual channels, be it an app, an interactive website, or a strong social media presence, is key to retaining consumer trust and opening your brand to a broader audience. If you can continue to deliver the same excellent customer experience from online as you can from a brick-and-mortar store, then you’re ahead of the herd.
Emotive branding that communicates what a brand stands for is a sure-fire way to stand out from the crowd, but it must be genuine. Listen to your consumer. Understand what makes them tick. Consumer behaviour is constantly changing and so is the need to maintain one’s trust in your brand. Now is not the time to stagnate. If the pandemic has taught us is anything, it’s the need for brands to adapt and respond quickly to the needs of the consumer.
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