We all know that in order to grow as a business, we need to build a brand. But what is a brand and how to build it? Contrary to popular belief, brand building need not be an expensive affair. You don’t need a team of market researchers and designers to build a brand. You can start by asking yourself a few questions.
- What do I want to be known for?
- Who should I sell to?
- How do I stand out?
Before we jump into how a brand is built, we need to understand what a brand is.
Let’s break it down.
What is a brand?
Simply put, brand is the perception customers have about your company. It is your reputation.
A brand consists of many things. Sure, it includes a cool logo and catchy tagline. But it mainly includes deeply-rooted company values, sound offerings, reliable customer service and honest marketing. All these elements portray your brand to the outside world.
Brand is the impression consumers have about you. However, it should produce real-world results. A solid brand helps:
- Communicate what you offer
- Customers make buying decisions
- Forge authentic relationships with consumers
- Guide staff and leadership
Now, let’s get down to the 5 steps towards building a successful brand.
The end goal of all businesses is to generate profits. But that kind of purpose doesn’t build a brand. Your brand purpose goes beyond your products and credentials.
Purpose is the “why” of everything you do. Brand purpose connects with people at an emotional level. Though the question is simple, the answer is most often not.
A clear purpose is at the core of your brand identity. This lays the foundation for the business’ logo, colors, voice, visuals and more.
Positioning is what makes you different from others in the industry. This helps you find a foothold in the marketplace.
Closely monitor the competitors and establish your distinctions. Why should people buy from you? What is something you can offer that others aren’t offering? Consider both tangible and intangible needs of your target market and find that sweet spot to tailor your offering.
Brands are just like people. Brand personality is the human characteristics people associate with a brand. If your brand was a person, who would it be? Someone who is warm and approachable, someone you can share a joke with or someone who is cool and sophisticated?
Brand personality starts with knowing your target audience. And then creating a personality that resonates with them at an emotional level.
Bring your brand personality to life by chalking out what it looks like and how it sounds.
This is the visual representation of the brand. Logo, content, imagery, colors, tagline and any external manifestation of your brand is its identity.
While brand personality is the character and emotions of a brand, identity is its design.
Brand identity conveys its qualities and personality. Customers interact with a brand at many places and brand identity should shine through at all these touchpoints.
Forming good customer relationships is the heart of brand building. This is non-negotiable when it comes to building a long lasting brand.
Set up ways to communicate with your customers. Let them know what they need to know. Don’t hold back any information and truly help customers make a decision.
At the other end of that phone call or email is another person. Making a connection becomes easier if you are authentic and genuine.
Brand building does not happen overnight. It is a consistent process of forming long term relations with your customers. But built properly, a brand can be the most valuable asset of your business.
If you are just launching or refreshing your brand, talk to us at email@example.com