Do you ever wonder why some businesses have that unmistakable, unforgettable presence in the market, while others seem to fade into the background?
Have you thought about what makes you recognise certain businesses, people, or products instantly?
It all comes down to one powerful word: brand.
I recently presented a Getting Your Brand Right Workshop, so today, I'm sharing a snippet of what we covered, starting with:
Why Your Brand is Important
Let's start with the basics – why should you even care about branding or getting your brand right?
Well, there are several compelling reasons:
Think about brands that pop into your mind instantly. Even as a small business, your name can be recognisable, especially if you're serving a local market.
Imagine being the go-to brand in your area. Would people know your business name more than your competitors? If not, it's time to work on your brand.
Want to know more about local marketing? You can read my local marketing tips here.
2. Legitimacy and Trust
You've heard me talk about the Know, Like, and Trust Factor heaps of times.
If people know who you are, like what you do, and trust your brand, they're more likely to buy from you.
So having a strong brand creates legitimacy and builds trust with your potential clients. It shows that your business is established and reliable.
And the more people know about your brand, the more legitimate and trustworthy you appear. This is essential for gaining your client's trust.
Having a strong brand means people are more likely to find out about you (Know you), like what you're offering (Like you) and trust your product or service (Trust). And that builds a strong loyal client base.
A strong, consistent brand makes your marketing activities easier to manage.
When you have a clear brand, it's easier to create marketing materials that are consistent across all platforms. This consistency helps people recognise your brand and builds trust in the long run.
Plus, consistency also helps with creating a cohesive message and reinforcing your brand values, making your overall marketing strategy more effective.
4.Attracts your ideal clients
A well-defined brand attracts a specific target market, aka your ideal clients .
When you have a clear understanding of your brand and its values, you can tailor your messaging and visuals to appeal to your ideal clients. This will help attract more of the right people to your business.
5. Values and Mission
People want to work for something they believe in. When your brand reflects your values and mission, it inspires both your employees and clients. It creates a sense of purpose and passion, which can ultimately lead to more success for your business.
Ultimately, a strong brand leads to more sales. When people know and trust your brand, they will be more likely to buy from you.
Plus, a well-defined and consistent brand can also justify higher prices for your products or services as it adds value and credibility to your offerings.
Attracting the right clients and increasing sales – now that's why getting your brand right is important!
What is Brand?
So, what exactly is brand and what part does it play in getting your brand right?
Well your brand is certainly much more than just a logo or colour scheme.
Your brand encompasses the entire image and messaging of your business. It's how you make people feel and think about your business.
Brand is emotional.
And people make buying decisions based on emotions and justify them with logic afterwards.
So, your brand creates an emotional connection with your market, making it important to understand the emotions it evokes.
While your brand includes elements such as your company name, logo, tagline, colours, fonts, and tone of voice, it doesn't stop there. It also includes your brand story, values, mission, and overall image.
All of these elements work together to create a brand identity that represents your business and resonates with your ideal clients.
Now you may think that branding is just for big corporations. But this is not so. As a small business owner, getting your brand right is more important than ever. And that means understanding your brand essence.
How to define your brand essence
Your brand essence comprises five key aspects that together define your business:
- Values of User
- Emotional Rewards
- Functional Benefits
Let's look at these in a bit more depth.
Imagine if your brand were a person. How would you describe them? Fun, conservative, quirky? Your brand's personality should align with your target audience.
Your brand personality is how you want your business to come across to your audience. It's the human traits or characteristics that you associate with your brand.
Think about what kind of person your brand would be if it were a human – friendly, professional, playful, serious, etc.?
This helps you create a clear image and tone for your brand.
2. Values of User
What are the principles your customers or clients value? Is it all about the dollars, or do they prioritise life experiences and ethics?
Knowing this helps you tailor your brand to their preferences.
Your values should align with those of your ideal clients to create a deeper connection with them. Take some time to think about what values are essential to your brand and your target audience.
3. Emotional Rewards
As mentioned before, brand is emotional, and understanding the emotional rewards of your brand can be a powerful tool.
What feelings or emotions do you want your clients to experience when they interact with your brand? Happy, inspired, motivated? These are all potential emotional rewards that your brand can evoke.
Knowing these emotions allows you to create a consistent and impactful brand image that resonates with your target audience.
Remember, these emotional rewards are part of the reason why people connect with brands and continue to support them.
4. Functional Benefits
Apart from emotional rewards, your brand should also provide tangible benefits for your clients.
What problems does your product or service solve? What are the unique features or benefits that set it apart from competitors?
For example, if you're a software development company, your functional benefits may be user-friendly interfaces, customizable features, and top-notch customer support. By identifying and communicating these tangible benefits, you can effectively differentiate your brand from competitors while also addressing the specific needs and wants of your target audience.
Understanding the functional benefits of your brand also helps you highlight them in your marketing and attract more clients who are looking for those specific solutions.
Your attributes are the physical features or characteristics of your brand. They are different to functional benefits – these are the tangibles, eg TimTam attributes are a chocolate biscuit that tastes delicious.
Attributes can include things like product design, packaging, materials used, and even the location of your business.
Think about what attributes make your brand unique and incorporate them into your marketing strategy. These small details may seem insignificant, but they can have a big impact on how people perceive and connect with your brand.
The Starfish Marketing Brand
To help you understand how to define your brand, let's take a closer look at the Starfish Marketing brand.
Personality: Our brand is all about fun, being approachable, practical, and a tad quirky.
User Values: We are dedicated to strong ethics, putting people at the centre of our efforts, and keeping our promises.
Emotional Rewards: When our customers do business with us, they feel valued, confident, and supported – it's like a warm hug.
Functional Benefits: Our services provide time-saving solutions, consistency, support, and a sense of making a difference. We offer simple and practical advice and actions, creating lasting partnerships.
Attributes: Our attributes include strategy, mentoring, communications, newsletters, websites, website content maintenance, social media management, brand consistency, content creation, and referrals.
Starfish Marketing Brand Essence: Our brand, inspired by the starfish story, is all about making a positive impact and helping you, as a business owner, with straightforward advice and tools to simplify your life while having fun along the way.
Getting your brand right
Now that you understand the five key aspects of brand essence, it's time to define your business' brand.
Spend some time thinking about each element and how they align with your business goals and target audience.
Once you have a clear understanding of your brand essence, make sure to incorporate it into all aspects of your marketing. Remember, consistency is key when it comes getting your brand right.
By defining your brand essence, you can create a powerful and recognisable image for your business that resonates with your ideal clients and sets you apart from the competition. So go ahead and start building your brand today! You'll be amazed by the impact it will have on your business success.
And remember that your brand is not just a logo or product – it's the entire experience and emotions that people associate with your business.