Branding — sounds familiar? But then there's often confusion around its meaning in business. Branding lies at the heart of every business. For developing a business, building a brand is its crucial part. It is the groundwork for giving your business meaning, an identity, and cognisance among customers. And let me tell you, while you are in business, it's requisite to think about branding your business too. Do not just build a business; build a brand!
Building a successful and promising brand process outshines the competition and brings forth loyal and devoted customers. Massive progression and raving fans will eventually follow. The branding process defines your company's vision, mission, and place in the market. A different and adored brand is one of the most prized assets a company can own.
Branding is much more than just a logo or how your business is perceived on the outside. In the words of Jeff Bezos, "Your brand is what other people say about you when you're not in the room." So — 'Your brand, your reputation!
"Rome was not built in a day." And so does branding. You cannot expect the branding process to happen overnight. Branding requires strategy, effort, and an approach to build a long-term relationship with customers. And most importantly, branding requires time. Read on to know more about practical steps and strategies to successfully implement branding to help grow your business to the next level:
Brand Strategy + Brand Identity + Brand Marketing = Successful Branding
Before diving into the branding steps, focus on developing your strategies to give your brand recognition, face, and identity. Highlight your organisation by creating awareness of products and services to the right readership through marketing.
Steps Involved in Branding
1. Define your identity
Who are you as a brand? Defining your identity as a brand is an essential part of starting your branding process. Doing some corporate assessment will help you figure out who you are as a brand and what you want to be. How do you want yourself to be known? What is your mission as a company and the core values? What differences are you going to make as a brand? The more clarity you get on these questions, the more you can permeate that identity into building your brand. More the merrier! Defining your brand will make it stand out and invite readership.
2. Discover your brand's purpose
Everything that we do in life has a purpose hidden behind it. The same applies while branding for your business. What secrets does a thriving business hold? Have you ever wondered? The secret behind every successful brand is its powerful purpose. It is what you wake up each day loving to do for other people, making a difference in the world through your product or service.
Ask yourself – WHY, HOW, WHAT before defining your brand's purpose!
- What – as in the what products/services you offer and what problems does it solve for your customers
- How – as in the things that differentiate you from the rest
- Why – as in why you exist, the reason you are ardent, and why should people care
Make these the fundamental aspect of building your brand's foundation. Add a catchy tagline, jingles, messaging, value propositions, stories, and more to make it unique and impactful.
3. Research competitor brands within your industry
There is always scope for learning. Learn from already established big brands – the 'Big Players', to make your brand stand out from what's out there already. The goal is to analyse your competitors and determine what they have to offer to their customers/users. Think about what differentiates your business from your competitors. Your business's branding should accentuate that difference and revolve around what makes your product/services better. But then don't try to be like your competitors. Meaning - be mindful of what they do or fail but never emulate exactly what other brands are doing in the business. Don't skip this step in the brand-building process.
Convince your customers to choose you over others. For a brand name to be operative, it is also necessary for consumers to identify and remember your brand.
4. Determine your target readership
Who is your target readership? Are they small business owners or general readers? Are they financial experts or IT employees? Are they mid-scale business owners or someone else? Tell us about your target audience. They cannot be everyone.
Numerous small businesses focus on figuring out their identity and the categories of products or services they want to put out. As a result, they entirely disregard figuring out their audience that they're trying to sell those products or services to—and their branding suffers the brunt of it.
When in brand building, narrow your target audience. Because the strategy is to get specific, you need to keep in mind who you are trying to reach. The base for building your business brand is to define your target audience that you'll be focusing on. Doing so will tailor your brand's mission and message to fulfil your customers' needs, thus delivering good services.
Take some time to figure out the problematic behaviours and lifestyles of your consumers. Define your ideal customer. Knowing who they are and how old they are, are they mainly from one gender and their income bracket and qualification? Your audience's persona can solidify the who and wherefores of your customers. What matters to them should matter to you.
When you know who your customers and your target market are, you can direct the knowledge to monitor your branding strategy—and thus, yours will be a brand that outshines and truly bonds with the customers.
5. Shape your brand's qualities and benefits
There’s always bigger fish in the sea. Don't try to match your products, services, and resources to giant companies right off the bat when building your brand. Instead, try digging deeper into delving out a memorable brand in terms of what new it can offer the market and focusing on its qualities and benefits to make it unique. Give your audience an alluring reason to choose you over another.
Keep in mind always offering something that makes people's lives even a tiny bit easier, and you will gradually see your brand will prosper for it. Now, go dive deep into your brand building!
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