Big bad brand

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For businesses without a real marketing department, the idea of a brand identity can seem quite trivial.

Your brand is ultimately what defines you to your customer. All the biggest companies in the world possess either a definitive name, slogan or symbol that an audience can quickly associate to the organisation.

But don’t be fooled into thinking branding is a simple process; one that can be done within a few hours. Far from it. It takes time to get it right.

A term we regularly use within our business is ‘the customer journey’. Putting ourselves in our customer’s shoes. If you were looking at your own company – what would you want to see? A beautiful, in-depth logo for example might not be the best option for a company that has simple ideologies.

Here are some tips…

Research

To create the perfect brand you must first undertake some research and discover what your target audience thinks of your current brand. This will help you discover its strengths – which need to be built upon – but also your weaknesses. I’d also advise you to talk to your employees on their thoughts, as at the end of the day they are the ones who communicate your brand.

Vision Statement

After the research, you then need to create a vision statement. Develop a sentence that defines exactly what your business’ goals are. For example, Oxfam’s is ‘A just world without poverty’. This is a brilliant choice because it succinctly conveys what the organisation wants to do. The vision statement will also help ensure you keep things simple and don’t overcomplicate things.

Mission Statement

The next step is pretty similar to the previous, but the mission statement should be slightly longer – about a paragraph in length. This should be motivational and describe what exactly your business does, and how it does it. In other words, why would they choose you? Avoid jargon and complicated terminology within your statement.

Essence

This may sound complicated, but it’s actually really simple. What emotions do you want your customer to feel when they see your brand? Another way of looking at it is: if your brand was a person, how would you describe them?

Personality

Which brings us nicely on to personality. Developing the essence idea, you should apply some human feelings to your business. Again, if it was a person, how would it act or behave? What characteristics define it?

Position

Finally, it is always important to remember who you are speaking to. Make sure you have previously defined the audience you are targeting. You need to have their interests at heart and develop a brand that delivers on its promises. Your customers can go elsewhere, so make sure they know why they should be choosing you.

While I can’t promise miracles with these tips, I can assure you that your brand will be much stronger if you’ve applied the principles. If you’re still struggling, there are plenty of talented agencies and copywriters only a phone call away.

What’s crucial to take away from this is the importance of a strong brand identity to your business.