Branding not only sets your organization apart from everyone else’s, it also works to always keep you and your team on track in everything you do. This is why it is imperative that you get it right first before doing anything else.
In most cases, hiring a professional to craft your branding for you is a good idea. But this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have any say in the process. In fact, at the very least, all the basic elements should come from you because no one knows your company better than you do.
Don’t worry, though, because this article will equip you with all the tools you need to get started. Check out the five key elements of successful branding below:
Start by answering two basic questions: what does your organization do and for whom? You answer should serve as a guideline for you and your team so you won’t lose your way no matter how big your company gets. It also allows you to make it clear to your target customers (and shareholders) how they can benefit from doing business with you.
But defining your brand positioning does not stop here. You also need to differentiate yourself from all your competitors because unless you’re doing something so inimitable that no one else can do something similar anytime in the foreseeable future, chances are that there’s someone else in the market already doing it.
If your brand were a person, what would you want it be known for? Would it be fun and playful? Dignified and credible? Charitable and noble? As a general rule, it’s a good idea to list anywhere between four and six single-word traits to help shape your brand personality.
Of course, these traits would all ultimately depend on your industry and target market because a fun and playful personality, for instance, would probably not work too well in industries revolving around finance and accounting where people are looking for someone with an air of proficiency and credibility.
How do you plan on creating value for your customers? Is it through excellent customer service, top notch product quality or unparalleled cost-effectiveness? Or is it through something else entirely?
Regardless of your answer, the key thing is to make sure that you deliver on it every single time. Everything you and your team do must be governed by it. All your customers, employees and shareholders should enjoy it whenever they do business with you.
Typically used to build credibility and add value to a brand, the brand story shows your company’s history and how it led you to where you are today. In most cases, it also contains a short overview of products and/or services.
By now, you should already have a pretty solid idea of what your branding is. All that’s left to do is to crystallize it into a clear brand image. This entails deciding on your company’s official logo, colors, fonts and overall communication style – which you can then easily translate into all sorts of marketing and advertising collaterals.
Do you have any other branding tips to share? Post them in the comments!