With the right strategy and work, you can build a brand that stands out. Branding is not just a logo. It’s about building an experience that delights your customers and makes them feel special.
Customers will always choose the product with the most value for their money, even if it means that you have to spend more on branding than on features. The best way to create value for customers is through:
- Creating a consistent experience for your customer across all touch points (the website, social media posts, ads etc.)
- Creating a Unique Selling Proposition (USP), which explains why people should buy from you over any other competitor in the market
- Delivering an unforgettable customer experience
01. Development of the brand team
As you begin to form a team, it’s important to keep in mind that the branding process will take time, so your brand team needs to be able to work well together. While there are no hard-and-fast rules for building a perfect brand team, here are some things you should think about during this stage:
The size of your business (and budget) will determine how many people can contribute their knowledge and skills towards creating a strong identity for your company. But make sure that the people on your team are talented enough—and have enough free time—to complete all of their assigned tasks before deadlines hit. They should also be able to communicate effectively with other teams within and outside of the organization; if they don’t have those interpersonal skills they might not be able to present company goals in an effective manner.
02. Perform business analysis
Your brand identity is a reflection of your business, so it’s important to understand your business to ensure that the brand identity accurately reflects all aspects of your business.
This is where you can start with a company audit, which entails examining:
- Your strengths and weaknesses as an organization.
- The history of the company (including how it began).
- Current products and services offered by the company.
- Company values, mission statement or philosophy.
03. Identify your target audience
The next step in building your brand identity is to identify your target audience. Are they men, women, or children? Young adults or adults? Are they located in metropolitan areas or rural areas? What are their needs and pain points?
Do they have an existing product that is underperforming because it doesn’t align with their values? Do they need a new product altogether but don’t know what that should be yet?
In order to build a successful brand experience around them, you need to understand who they are. In order to do this, ask yourself:
Who am I targeting as my ideal customer for this project/product/service (or whatever it is)?
04. Develop brand positioning
Define the problem. Ask yourself: What is your brand’s purpose? Is it to inform, entertain, or inspire? Will you be targeting consumers or professionals? Where do you see your company in five years and what are the steps that will get you there? The answers to these questions will help define how you should position yourself.
Set clear goals for each stage of the process. Your mission statement should be a guiding force throughout every phase of building a brand identity—and before starting each new step (see “Planning Ahead”), make sure it reflects any changes in direction as well as your overarching direction. Don’t worry about what other people think—it’s all about finding what works best for your business and sticking with it through thick and thin!
05. Create a consistent tone, messaging and visual style
Consistency is key for building a brand. In order to build trust with customers, you need to clearly define your tone and messaging in a consistent way. Consistent messaging will help you build recognition among your audience, as well as increase their loyalty over time.
06. Brand launch and evaluation
Launch your brand with a bang. Measure the success of your launch to better understand what resonated with customers and why. Measure the success of your brand over time, in order to identify patterns that can help you improve and strengthen it.
To build a brand, you have to be committed for the long term. This means staying consistent over time—you don’t want to change your logo every six months or redesign your website every year. Maintaining an easily recognizable visual identity that customers and clients can recognize across all social media platforms, including your Instagram feed, Facebook page and Twitter profile is important.
The best way to keep things consistent is by keeping them simple: don’t redesign everything at once! Instead of making drastic changes all at once (which may confuse customers), take one step at a time as needed along the path towards growing your brand identity over time—and make sure that each step is aligned with previous steps before moving on to new ones.