Branding for your business is not a new concept, but it’s one that’s often overlooked by new businesses and startups today. Many business owners are aware of the importance of branding but do not know why or how to develop their brand identity.
Branding is defined as the relationship of your company with your customers. It’s not a tangible thing, it’s the way you are perceived by your audience. It includes things like how you communicate with your audience, for example - is your tone serious or quirky? How does your audience perceive you and what can they expect from interacting with you?
Not having this in place can detract from your ability to gain new clients and increase your revenue overall. It’s really important to convey your story and your message through the various methods of communication with your customer. Communication includes they way you construct your emails, how you interact with people on social media, and even your website. So how can you build your brand?
1) Gettting The Right Business Name
Developing a great brand starts with choosing the right business name. This may be one of the hardest parts because your business name and your website should match and if you’ve ever tried to purchase a domain name, you know that the more common ones are taken. You also need to make sure your business name isn’t licensed in your state and that it hasn’t been trademarked.
2) Defining Your Brand
The first step is to define your brand by answering the following questions: who are my target customers, where do they hang out, what are their interests? What are my values as a business? How am I different from my competitors? What adjectives best describe my brand?
When you have the answers to these questions, you can determine who you are trying to reach and what the best way is to connect with them. From there, you can develop an appropriate marketing strategy for finding new customers.
3) Develop a Visual Brand Identity
A useful way to building out your visual identity is to use Pinterest to visually communicate the look and feel of your brand by gathering photos together that represent the “vibe” that you want your business to have.
After spending time on Pinterest and collecting photos, you should definitely notice some repeating colors and/or patterns. You may have an affinity for earth tones or stripes, for example. You can create a color palette for your business by pulling from the common colors on your Pinterest board.
4) Logo Design
Your logo should convey the values and the voice of your business and brand. If you are more on the corporate side, make sure your logo conveys that and if you are more on the casual side, you can show that to within your logo design and brand identity as well. Your logo will be seen everywhere- on stationary, on your website, in your social media, on your flyers etc. Make sure it’s professional, memorable, and easy to read at small sizes.
5) Connecting Through Story Telling
The way to make an impact with your business is with great storytelling. As Gary Vaynerchuk says, “we live in the greatest ADD culture of all time.” The older way of story telling does not work as we don’t sit on the couch to sift through someone’s website, social media profiles and videos in one day. We now have unlimited amounts of outlets and we learn about businesses on our own time while scrolling thru our Instagram and Facebook feeds while on line at the supermarket and by following people and businesses on Snapchat. Our interactions with brands are quick and are attention spans have become limited.