Branding Your Business. Like A Boss.
Branding your business is one of the MOST IMPORTANT things you do as a business owner. No pressure.
If you’re here reading this blog post you’ve probably already realized this and now you’re looking for some advice on where to get started, right? Welcome, my friend. You’re in the right place.
Are you ready? The first and most important tip I can possibly give you for branding your business like a boss: Your brand starts with you. You have to be the expert on it. If you don’t definitively know what your brand stands for, what it looks like, feels like, sounds like… you, my friend, have got some work to do.
How can you tell your employees, your potential customers, your Instagram followers, or even your mom the values and the “why” behind your business if you don’t know what they are? Think back to when you started your business. Remember when you took that courageous (maybe even a tad insane) leap of faith and decided to go after your dream? What was it that fueled your fire? The answer to that question is where your brand story begins.
If this is still kind of confusing, then think of your branding as Thanksgiving dinner or any other holiday that focuses on a whole meal. I’m not a big fan of Thanksgiving (for a few reasons) but I love all the food so let’s just use it as the analogy because it makes sense. Let’s say your logo is the turkey. It’s the main show, yes indeed. But the whole thing? No.
No One Knows Your Biz Like You Do. By putting your true soul into your brand, you put authenticity into your business, and in turn, your tribe will willingly follow. The truth of the matter is this: no one knows your brand like you do. Your brand, after all, should be a direct reflection of you. So how do you find that brand within yourself? It’s time to do some soul-searching. Dig deep and put your thoughts on paper. Write down (oh yes, I’m talking gel pen to paper, my friend) your desires, your values, your likes, your dislikes. All the things that make you, you. Make sure it’s your true authentic self that you’re pulling out. People can smell a phony from a mile away.
By putting your true soul into your brand,
you put authenticity into your business,
and in turn, your tribe will willingly follow.
3 Pieces of The Branding Puzzle: Visual, Verbal, and Experiential aka your charming good looks, your charismatic personality, and the way people feel when they’re around you.
- The Look
Clear, defined, consistent visual branding will resonate with your customers and they’ll be able to quickly pick you out from the crowd. You might have heard us at Here + Now Creative Co. say it before, and we’ll say it time and time again. Simplicity sells. It’s your business. It’s your baby. You want to dress it up in adorable outfits and bows and parade it around town for all the world to see. We know. But here’s the deal. Too much going on will confuse your audience. Consistency is key. If your visual branding is not seamless on everything your customer interacts with, you will: 1. Lose their trust, and, 2. Lose any opportunity for brand recognition. Think of it this way – if the Nike swoosh looked different on each shoe they sold, you would have no way of knowing if it’s truly a Nike product or just some cheap knockoff.
- The Sound
The key to finding your brand voice is to know who you’re talking to. If you’re trying to talk to everyone, you’ll end up talking to no one. Who are your ideal customers, and what are you to them? Are you their BFF who keeps it real, or are you more of the most popular girl in school that everyone wants to be friends with? The way you speak to your audience will depend on how you position yourself.
Once you’ve got the who, then you’ve got to figure out the how. How are you going to communicate to your audience? What’s your message? What are you trying to tell them? What do you want them to know about you? Remember simplicity and consistency are the hammers that drive in these nails. Whatever your message is, be sure that it is simple and clear. A clear message will always result in a bigger response than a complex one.
- The Feel
This is the part most people forget about when they think of branding, but it’s probably the most important. How does your customer feel when they interact with your brand? Do you know? If you don’t perhaps it’s time to ask them. They might provide you with some eye-opening feedback.
Think of the last brand you encountered. Now, when you think about that brand, how do you feel? I imagine if it’s not a good feeling you won’t continue to buy it or interact with that product or brand. It’s that simple. The power of experience is almighty. People may still buy your product if they don’t like your logo. People might even still buy your product if they don’t like your message. But the chances of them continuing to buy your product if their customer experience is bad are pretty much slim to none. Seriously, when was the last time you continued to buy a product, or go back to a store that you had a poor experience in? Ughh… yeah never. In fact, you might have even left them a nasty Yelp review. Yeah, we know. They probably deserved it.
The obvious goal here is to win them over with all three elements of branding: visual, verbal, and experiential. Do that and you, my friend, have got yourself a loyal following.
This may seem like a lot of information and a lot of work, and to tell you the truth, it is. As business owners ourselves, Sam and I know the struggles. Making your message clear, keeping all your visuals consistent, making your brand a direct reflection of yourself while also incorporating your clients into the mix… It’s kind of a bitch, I mean, really. But it’s a bitch we happen to love. So, if you’re ready to take your brand to the next level, we want to help you. Click here to schedule your free Discovery call.