Whether you are aware of it or not, if you have a business, then you have a brand. Your brand is essentially the personality of your business, which you use inadvertantly to sell your products or services. All the elements that make your business unique such as, your business values, your business philosophy and your target audience, are distilled down and communicated in your brand message. This message is reflected in your company name, your logo, your tagline, your web design, your business cards, stationary and even how and where you advertise. It can even manifest in how your employees answer the phone! Applying the brand message to everything you do, clearly and consistently, is your key to successful branding.
Branding is all about impressions! Taking ownership of your brand means you have control over how your business is presented to the world. Choosing not to take ownership means that you leave it up to everyone else to decide what that brand is. Branding aims to differentiate and can be your main driving force within a competitive market place. It can inject excitement in to a company and make people take notice.
Investing in a brand identity can be invaluable. Building a strong brand will make the work of your sales people easier and more effective, make your employees more committed and encourage advocacy in your customers. It may not seem like an instantly rewarding exercise, but in the long run, solid branding will increase sales.
Good branding makes the purchase process easier for the customer. A solid brand may evoke feelings of loyalty and reliability. It may also conjure memories of positive experiences the customer has had with your brand in the past. This feeling of trust can take away any hesitation prior to conversion, thereby streamlining the path to purchase.
Self-awareness is key to building a successful brand identity. Get to the crux of who you are as a business. What are your long-term goals and what are your strengths? Maybe you are known for impeccable customer service, your longevity as a company or perhaps you are new, modern and cutting edge? This is where that ‘elevator pitch’ concept comes in to play. How would you convey visually and in a sound bite the personality of your business? Can you summarise what you do in a tagline? If you can, do so and use it wherever possible. This can be very effective as it instantly connects your business with your brand values. You could also try asking existing customer what they like about doing business with you. You may find that some of the answers are not be what you expected and they could give you a valuable insight in to how to build your brand.
Establish style guides for how your brand will be managed both on and off line. The tone and the language you use should be inline with your overall brand identity. Make sure all employees are familiar with these style guides so that the brand message is always consistent. There should be a seamless flow between all channels and your business communications should always sound like they are coming from a unified source.p>
Red Man media have been helping Irish businesses to develop their brand identities since 2008. Have a look at what we do and an example of some of our branding work here.
Investing in a brand identity can be invaluable. Building a strong brand will make the work of your sales people easier and more effective, make your employees more committed and encourage advocacy in your customers.
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