You’ve heard the conversation in marketing circles: Apple, Starbucks and Virgin have great brands. Their branding is spot-on.
What does this mean, anyway?
You know that these companies are huge. You know they’re doing a lot of things right. Yet, you can’t seem to put your finger on this thing everyone calls branding.
Today is the day when you gain a solid grasp on the concept of branding. I’m going to make this intangible notion something solid—something real that you can really dig your teeth into and use for the betterment of your own business.
Let’s get started.
Branding is all about claiming a space in the consumer’s (your ideal client’s) mind. Branding keeps your business there, ready for the memory to access, whenever a need for your product or service may arise. It also keeps it ready to go whenever a referral opportunity arises—and we all know how valuable (and free) word-of-mouth advertising is.
Really, and more specifically, branding is the sum of all the things you will do to accomplish the above.
Here are the [reachable] goals of branding:
- conveyance of a clear, concise and targeted message
- statement of corporate values
- communication of a promise
- proof of trustworthiness
- cultivation of customer and employee loyalty
- incentive to purchase and spread the word
Your brand is the idea that consumers have about your company. It’s what they remember about it and what they say about it. It is a viable asset, worth money at sale. A brand works to establish your business’s reputation, as well as to build expectations that you can exceed in order to make the brand progressively stronger.
Creating and building that brand is branding. Here are some of the things you will accomplish as you move through the branding process:
- Define that which differentiates your brand from others in your industry and niche.
- Determine your business’s role in its market.
- Identify, study and become acquainted with your business’s ideal client.
- Generate (or further develop) a business name that is indicative of your brand’s values, promise, vision and mission.
- Design visual elements to convey the same.
- Identify touchpoints in which consumers will encounter your brand, and design a memorable experience to accompany each one.
- Create online and offline marketing campaigns to broadcast your brand’s visual elements.
- Develop a strategy for attaining new clients and retaining existing ones.
- Ascertain consumers’ perceptions of your brand, and adjust your strategy to enhance the positive and renovate the negative.
The way we see it, branding is not just a perk, or something an entrepreneur might do in her spare time. It’s non-negotiable and absolutely necessary if you want to charge what you believe your product/service is worth, if you want to save time and money on marketing, and if you want to experience the level of professional success that will afford you the personal life you desire.
If you’re ready to learn more about the branding process and what it can do for your start-up, small business or corporation, I strongly recommend enrolling in an upcoming B.R.A.N.D. Building Bootcamp, hosted by the branding experts at How to Build a Brand. In this full-day event, you will be utterly immersed in the branding wisdom that took us from £0 to £18,000 per month in only 12 weeks. Register here today, before all seats are filled.