Branding is an important aspect of running a business. But what exactly does “branding” mean? Well, your brand is your promise delivered to your customers. It’s how your company is perceived when customers hear your company name. For example, when I hear “Toyota,” I think “reliable.” And when I hear “Apple,” I think “cool.” Your company’s brand tells customers what they could expect from your products and services. As your point of differentiation, it can make you or break you in competitive markets.
Here are four things to consider when creating your company’s brand:
1. Every company has a unique story to tell. Your brand should be derived from that story because it’s who you are as a company. However, you should also think about whom you want to be for your target customers and what your customers need you to be. Let your customers know that your promise as a brand is not just a gimmick by consistently delivering on that promise. Strive to own a word or phrase that defines your brand and what’s special about it in the mind of your customers.
2. Create brand standards for your marketing materials. Follow these standards to ensure that everything from your website to your products’ packaging have a consistent look and feel to them. Allowing lapses in the brand standards creates confusion in the mind of the customer. The goal is to establish your brand so that one glimpse of your company color scheme, layout or logo immediately makes your customers think of your brand.
3. Just as everything should be consistent visually, so should your message. A good way to help everyone remember is through the use of a tagline that captures the essence of your brand. Make sure everyone in your company knows the brand attributes you want to communicate so that it can extend to every aspect of your business. Your brand messaging should be applied to all written and verbal communication both online and offline. With this one voice, you are constantly reminding your customers how distinctive you are as a brand.
4. You have an idea of what you have been communicating about your brand. Now, it’s time to face what people are actually saying about your brand. Remember, when it comes to your brand, your customers’ perception is their reality. Do your research to find out if the brand messages you created are being shared among your customers or are being received as intended.
So, who do you say you are? More importantly, what do people think of when they hear your company name? If you need a strategy to establish your brand identity, contact us! We want to help you tell your story.