If you took a walk down any street, you’d find brands everywhere you look. Brands have become the backbone of the marketing industry. The most successful companies are those who have established themselves as a brand that the public identifies with and, most importantly, trusts.
Developing a brand that your target market will come to recognize and associate with quality is essential for the success of any business. So what do you need to do to develop your own brand?
Know What You Want To Be
First of all, you need to understand what branding is and why your business needs it. Having a recognizable brand is the best way for you to create a loyal customer base who will return to buy your products or services time after time.
Do your brand research.
Now that you understand why you need branding, you need to do your research to establish what kind of brand you want to have. Put yourself in the position of your target customers, talk to them and find out what they want/expect from a brand in your niche.
Create your mission statement.
Once you have a better idea of what your customers are looking for, you then create a mission statement. This mission station should clearly define your company’s purpose, goals and values.
Develop your brand.
Once you know what kind of brand you want to have and have created your mission statement, it’s time to begin developing your brand. As you build your brand, focus on these values.
Promote Your Unique Selling Point
Creating your mission statement should have helped you identify a gap in the market or a way to improve a service/product that already exists. This will allow you to establish your Unique Selling Point, or USP.
Your brand should let your customers know what you do, why you do it and, most importantly, why they should choose and trust you. With all that weight on your brand, it’s important to include your USP within this message.
The Important Bit
Now we get down to the nuts and bolts of actually creating the brand i.e. its name, logo and tagline. Take some time to think of an appropriate name, as this will be the thing that links you to your customers. It’s what they will tell their friends about and it will define you as a brand.
Along with the name, you will need a logo that acts as the face of the brand. Both should stand out from the crowd and to be recognizable to consumers. You could have the best product or service in the world, but if you have a boring or poor quality logo no one will remember or trust you. Therefore, it’s vital that you spend the appropriate time and money on developing a quality logo. It can’t be stressed enough how important it can be especially if you are selling a product.
Your tagline is also important, as it is your opportunity to tell your customers about your product, brand, and market position.
Once you have established your physical brand, it’s time to share it with the world. This means that you need to promote it, engage with your target market and build lasting relationships. Sounds easy, right? This is actually the hardest part of the whole process and it will be an on-going daily challenge (probably) as long as the brand exists.
Once you have built up a customer base, it’s time to take it to the next level and continue to the develop your brand and market it. A great way to do this is to create a marketing calendar with your goals and methods of achieving them laid out.
This could include a target for the amount of users you want to visit your website, how many products you intend to sell within a year, etc. Then embark on achieving them through a mixture of online marketing such as SEO, paid search and email marketing, as well as traditional marketing such as newspaper and radio advertising, brochures, trade magazines and whatever else is suited to your industry.
You may find from time to time that you need to make variations to your brand to keep it relevant and up to date. This isn’t a bad thing. It’s actually a good thing, as it allows you to keep your brand fresh. With the right marketing, your loyal customer base will roll with the changes.
Author Bio: Colin Smyth is the owner of 4 Corners Sign & Display who spend their days helping start-ups develop their brands.