10 things to know before branding your business
Think of a brand that you use in your everyday life. Hold that brand in your mind. What causes does this brand associate itself with? Who are its main customers? Think about the way the brand looks across multiple platforms and products. When you think about this brand, what kind of people do you see associated with it?
These are all questions that agencies, business owners and corporate heads go through when branding or rebranding their business. Below you will find tips that are sure to bring forth a brand that can maintain the face of your business.
Define Your Business Before Your Brand
Get into the nitty, gritty of your business. Think in terms of what your customers will see based on the products or services your business provides. After establishing what your business offers, look at who you are serving. Who is your customer base? How do they perceive your business?
After diving into the products, services and customer base, you will need to compare your business to the competition. Keep an open mind when you create this comparison. Be sure to separate businesses outside of your industry/market. Determine where your business sits on the shelf within your industry/market. Does your business sit amongst the top tier businesses or does it sit undiscovered with the cobwebs of the lowest tier? After determining where your business sits on the industry/market shelf you can begin creating a persona that resonates with your established audience.
Who is Your Brand?
Think of your brand as a person. A living being that thinks and acts in their own unique way. Are they a fly on a wall at a party or are they dancin’ it up jazzercise style? A brand like, Coca-Cola is associated with the young-minded individual, who is on the go all day. After a long day, they wind down with a Coca-Cola on ice. This brand has a clearly defined character, but the product is for everyone.
What Drives Business?
Understanding what drives your business is crucial to branding. Some businesses are driven by their employees’ relationship with customers, like Chick-fil-A. Some are driven by the life-changing product they provide, like Amazon’s Alexa. Each of these brands have a driving force that makes them memorable. Once you determine that driving force behind your business you can create a story between the brand’s persona and its mission.
The Beauty of the Business, Customer Relationship
Every business wants to see an increase in loyal and returning customers. Cultivating the relationship between the brand and its customers is important to maintaining a long term relationship. Creating a mutual benefit between the business and its customers is a great way to maintain that lasting relationship. For example, food service brands create rewards programs that encourage customers to become frequent visitors.
Look at what your business provides to its customers. Does the product or service your business offer provide support or a solution to its customers? This is something to consider when developing the persona of your brand.
The Voice of an Angel or the Rasp of a Queen
We previously talked about the brand being a person. When you were visualizing this person, did you think about their tone of voice? How were they talking to other party-goers or were they talking at all? A brand’s voice creates that emotional connection to customers and identifies a personable brand against its competitors. A customer isn’t going to want to talk to a businessman looking to make a sale at a local eatery.
The brand’s tone of voice also creates an avenue of dialogue. Once a conversation has begun between a brand and a customer, the seeds of a long term relationship have been planted. Be sure to create a tone of voice that translates well across multiple platforms of advertising. Ensure that the brand’s voice evokes an emotional connection with its customers.
Be Consistent, Not Repetitive
Be sure that your brand’s beliefs, values, and mission work together towards a common goal – to be the support or solution for customers. Make sure that you don’t become too repetitive with these key points. Understand the brand’s identity, then communicate the goal. Some brands maintain flexibility within their voice that can converse with every demographic.
Don’t Be a Copycat
It’s great to draw inspiration from other brands, but copying their brand model is out of the question. The point of creating a brand identity for your business is to set your business apart from the competition. Be sure to make the brand identity its own.
Stand Behind Your Brand’s Identity
Everything that you have built your brand to represent needs to be supported in every aspect of the business. Down to the imagery, the employee and customer interactions. Every facet of your business needs to reflect this ‘individual’ you’ve created. Don’t be afraid to jump at the next big advertising trend, but make sure your brand’s voice is consistent to what you have built. Set yourself apart from brands that don’t stray from the norm.
Reinforce the Relationship
Create a lasting relationship between customers and your brand. Make sure that your brand stays consistent with its established values and mission. You customers have found a part of your brand that resonates with them. Keep that momentum.
Create a Flexible and Engaging Brand
Make sure your brand can be translated across multiple mediums. Don’t slap your logo on a pen if you’re a pencil company.
What is your business? Who is your brand? When you start thinking about branding your business, make sure you understand that a brand is just as complex as an individual. A brand is essentially a living organism that must be able to adapt to the market or industry’s terrain. This brand is only given life through the needs and wants of its customers. Having a brand empowers the products or services you provide. Make sure your brand can evoke a feeling in association with a product or service. Create a brand that is evergreen and inspiring. Be sure to understand the functional and emotional benefits of the brand you create.
Posted: Feb 04, 2019