What is Branding?
We all know that we need a great brand. We dream of being on-par with the top global brands, of having a name that is instantly recognisable to our customers. But how do you do that? Branding is complex – after all, influencing a person’s perceptions about your company isn’t the easiest thing to do.
In a world where the battle for customers is intensifying every single day, having a strong brand is more important than ever. Here are our 7 tips on building a strong brand.
#1: Great Branding Starts With Great Leadership
Even if your business is just you, or you manage hundreds of employees, it all starts with the founder. What would the world have been today without Steve Jobs? Apple was Steve Jobs’ legacy, and that world-changing brand all started with him.
Great leaders all have the same three things in common: they know what they stand for, they know what their values are, and they know what they want the outcome of their business to be. They build their company culture around what they want to achieve. No matter what, branding starts with the leader.
#2: Brand From The Inside Out
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it until we’re blue in the face – no one can copy your culture. Your company’s culture is unique, and when it is something your employees believe in, they become not only your staff but your brand ambassadors.
This all starts with hiring the right people; we always say success is 20% skill and 80% attitude. When you pick a team that aligns with your values, it will be easy to for them to adopt your message. Think of your customers: What do you want their ideal experience to be like with you? Take that vision, and coach your team on how to make it happen.
#3: Know Your Audience
This comes up all the time, but truly knowing who your customer is can help you put the best branding strategy in place. After all, the entire reason your business exists is for your customer.
Your product or service is always solving a problem for your customer, so knowing their pain point is so important. If you can paint them a picture of their problem, and if you can articulate it better than they can, your brand will always win.
The more you interact with your customers and research your customers, the more familiar you’ll be with their pain points, and of what really motivates them. Social media is such a vital tool for this, because it enables you to literally reach out and communicate directly with your customer! Stalk them, understand their lives, and you will be able to define their problems better than even they can.
#4: Be A Great Storyteller
Sales is all about taking a person on a journey – it should be engaging, and it should be fun. Storytelling is a defining aspect of being human: we’ve been telling each other stories since the time of the cavemen!
Storytelling is such a powerful way to share your message because our brains are wired to remember information more clearly when it’s told in story format. When you tell a really great story that your customers can resonate with, you will always build brand loyalty.
#5: Be Clear
When we sit down to write our mission statements, we can have a tendency to want to make them as pretty as possible. But airy fairy mission statements only serve to confuse your customers, and like we’ve said before – confused customers won’t buy.
Try it for yourself: go to a few different websites and take the 5-second test. In just 5-seconds, can you determine what the company does, how they’re going to make your life better, and the what the next step is that you should take? If they don’t, then the customer clicks out.
Clarity is all about talking in your customer’s language. How can you make their world a better place? Clearly convey how you can deliver them value, and always get straight to the point.
#6: Be Consistent
Like we said in our previous branding blog, every interaction you have with your customer is a way to build your brand and your reputation. Even if it’s just a comment on an Instagram post, or a large-scale marketing campaign, every form of communication goes towards your brand.
This is why consistency is key when it comes to branding. When you are delivering the exact same message across all forms of media, eventually that message will start to stick. Branding takes time, which is why it sits at the very top of the sales funnel; these tactics can take years to pay off, but the end loyalty is so worth it.
#7: Be Authentic
“Be yourself” – they’re the buzzwords on everyone’s tongues, but it’s not as easy as it sounds. In fact, this is the hardest step in the branding process. People tend to struggle to truly express themselves, because we’re always so worried about being judged. What if you let your true self shine, and people don’t like it? What happens then?
At the end of the day, whoever is the leader dictates the brand, and it is their truth that is leading the company. To truly be yourself, you need to determine your truth. What guides you? What is your North Star? Why do you get up and go to work every day? When you stop caring about what other people think, there is nothing standing in the way of you and your truth. The more you move away from your truth, the more you hurt your brand.
And that’s it! Our 7 top tips for building successful brands. What did you think? We hope it’s been helpful!
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