To brand or not to brand? Should you put a brand name on your product? Being a woman entrepreneur is anything but easy. There are so many aspects to starting or improving your business that many times we neglect the essence of branding!
Well, nowadays branding is NOT a choice, and hardly any business goes unbranded. If you choose to take the “unbranded” route, your product or service will soon be eaten up by fierce competition.
Every brand has its own uniqueness. But sometimes marketers, entrepreneurs, owners don’t put enough emphasis on the brand concept. You may think that a brand is simply defined by the name of your company. However, it’s more than that. It’s not just about your logo and color scheme – it’s the value and promise you provide and an intend that you try to communicate to your future customer.
What is a brand, really?
A brand is a complete presentation of your company. It is the way a customer perceives your business, product or service in their mind. Your brand represents you, and it is a message you send to a customer. Creating a strong brand is an essential aspect of fighting for every customer.
Constant technology updates, the growth and importance of social networks, demographic shifts, and global markets without borders are constantly challenging businesses to think outside the box and to innovate.
“Your brand is not your product, your logo, your website, or your name. In fact, your brand is much more than that — it’s the stuff that feels intangible.” – Hubspot
Customers, in general, want to identify with a brand that earns their trust and makes them feel valued. It’s the same with people, with some you can relate to their personality and with some you cannot.
3 MUST-HAVE Elements Every Successful Brand Should Have
#1 Establish Brand Vision
So the initial part of the branding process is the research that will define how you want to be seen by your potential customers. It is also the vision that you have to establish for any future campaigns and marketing tactics you plan on pursuing to create brand awareness. According to the Brand Strategy Insider, by finding your brand’s purpose, you can better connect with your target audience. This will enable you to understand precisely what and how your customers think. The BIGGEST mistake you can make is to just focus on what you think is right. So, do your research, and then you need to ask yourself these questions:
- What is it that you want to achieve, what is your mission?
- What are the benefits and features of our service or product?
- What is it that you want customers to associate your company with?
You need to connect those questions with the demand that is out there to determine how to proceed with your brand’s strategy.
#2 Define Brand Voice
Before you start developing a brand concept for your business, it is important to identify your brand voice.
In essence, the brand voice can be:
- Personal – often celebrities, athletes, politicians and musicians would use this brand tone
- Corporate – everything that a company does have an effect on its image -its product or service, its corporate culture, its employees and its contributions to the community.
- Product – successful product branding is what pushes a consumer to choose one brand over another.
- Geographical – related to connecting images of particular products or services to a region or an area. For example Pasta and Italy, also this is related to Tourism business.
- Cultural – this brand voice connects individual cultures to reputation and the environment
You need to determine which brand voice is appropriate for you. One is not necessarily better than the other; they all have their pros and cons. You can also combine a number of brand voices to achieve the most suitable combination for your business.
Also, keep in mind, your brand voice is a NEVER fixed concept. You will need to keep your audience’s attention by using various communication paths and continuously develop new creative messages to reach your customers.
#3 Develop a Brand Strategy
Coming up with a successful brand strategy can be a very complex process. You need to define the following factors clearly:
The goal –start first with setting out your goals. When defining your strategy you need to know:
- What is it that you want to achieve?
- How are you going to put forth your marketing strategy?
- How are you going to bring your brand’s voice across to customers?
Target audience – clearly defining your buyer’s persona is the most important thing for creating your brand strategy. You need to clearly identify your target audience. If you think everyone is your audience, you are making a HUGE mistake. Thus, do your research to understand your customer’s needs and curate a message that resonates with them.
Focus on long-term growth – when it comes to a business brand, short term goals are often a mistake. You cannot build a brand overnight, so your focus should be on a long-term vision and sustainable growth. A strong foundation of the brand needs to be supported with a clearly defined strategy to secure the potential for real success in this competitive world.
Be flexible – you need to have a sound strategy outlined, but in a demanding and ever-changing market environment it’s imperative to have the flexibility to support the changes in the market, customers, and competitors.
Build your brand’s identity, its core value, and give it personality!