Has a focus on vanity metrics killed your brand?


Why more businesses need to get back to brand

We’ve all been there, buzzing about the likes on our latest post, obsessed by our growing follower count. But while undeniably initially satisfying, these numbers are a distraction. And focusing on them means forgetting your brand - the real driving force behind your growth.

At best fickle and at worst misleading, vanity metrics stroke our egos, telling us we’re doing a great job (and who doesn’t want to hear that) without actually offering any meaningful insights. Often unactionable, these sorts of stats aren’t related to anything we can control or repeat. Plus, they’re not indicative of success in the long-run. 

Sure, a high social media following might feel fun to brag to your mates about, but it doesn't necessarily translate to engaged customers or increased impact. Even viral posts, hailed as the holy grail, might temporarily spike your website traffic, but if those visitors don't convert into paying customers it ultimately doesn't contribute to your company’s development.

Enter brand. The not so basic we should all be going back to.

The power of brand 

From internal strategy through to external campaigns, your brand has the power to build trust and create connections - the two things you need to do to amplify your impact. 

It's not just about having a recognisable logo or catchy slogan, it's about creating an entire brand world that stands out from competitors and resonates with your target audience. A well-defined brand communicates at every single touch point what your company stands for, why it exists and how it adds value to customers' lives (read: why they should choose you).

While social media followers can disappear overnight, investing in brand-building leads to long-term benefits. Earning loyal customers who don’t just come back time and time again, but become brand advocates - spreading your positive impact even further.

Cultivating lasting relationships

Especially as a change-making brand, your customers are everything. And one of the key benefits of branding is that, when done well, it has your audience at its heart. 

The brands which customers can’t get enough of all have one thing in common - every element of them has been crafted with their audience in mind. Think: art direction based on their taste, marketing campaigns which address their needs, promotional videos that engage them. All cemented in solid guidelines which empower their whole team to maintain the brand and ensure it always connects with customers. The best of this group take their brand one step further and make their connections even deeper by incorporating audience feedback into their designs. This authentic interaction both engages people and guarantees the end-result is a brand they’ll truly love.

Just look at Locate Productions - their rebrand drove 200k page visits, crucially with a bounce rate of just 5%. Not just getting eyeballs, but genuinely engaging people, helping turn them from casual browsers into loyal customers. Proving the true power of a brand designed for its target audience and applied consistently.

Driving sustainable growth 

Vanity metrics might be your quick-fix to securing a serotonin hit, but what they don’t secure is sustainable growth. Nope, a well-established brand is what you need to drive long-term success. 

By focusing on branding efforts that prioritise authenticity, relevance and (most importantly) your audience, you can differentiate yourself even in the most crowded of markets. While you can’t control your industry, your customers or the world, a strong brand gives you stability. Acting as a beautifully designed anchor and enabling you to weather both inevitable and unforeseen market shifts - ya know global pandemics, that kind of thing. 

The positive impact of a strong brand extends way beyond immediate sales or conversions, too. It attracts top talent, encourages partnerships and opens doors to new opportunities. Pushing your company forward and allowing you to create the change you want to see in the world. Want proof? Check out the work we did with Kurtosys. Celebrated for its impactful and simple design, their suite of flexible brand assets helped the company to gain new ground in key markets. 

You’re not alone in falling into the vanity metrics trap, but it’s time to shift your focus away from these superficial figures back to meaningful brand work. In fact, getting back to brand is the only way to achieve more impact, exposure and engagement with the right audiences. Do it and pretty soon you’ll have some stats actually worth bragging about in the pub. 

So, what ya waiting for? You want to do great things and we want to help you. We’re Yoyo, the B-corp certified brand and digital agency dedicated to creating and reshaping brands for good. And we’d love to chat about your ambitions and how we can support you to achieve them.