Your branding acts as the recognisable face of your company. What does yours say?
Branding simply refers to everything that gives somebody a collective impression of a company. A strong brand identity is a crucial part of your sales strategy. You want people not only to be able to pick out and remember your business, but to understand what you’re about from the get go.
There are a few crucial, and luckily, simple, elements you want to nail in order to create a strong brand. Our team will take you through the five most key branding principles, and explain how you might employ them in your own business. Read on to find out more.
Define your brand
The first step to building a strong brand is deciding what you actually want to convey to your audience. There are a few questions you can answer about your business to be able to define what your brand should look like: firstly, what is your purpose? That is, what are you trying to achieve? For example, although mmunic is a marketing agency, our purpose is to provide personable and accessible email marketing.
Secondly, you want to define your position in the market. This refers to where you sit compared to others – knowing your unique selling point, or USP, is part of this. This means knowing what sets you apart from other similar brands. Are you a premium brand? Are you convenient? Essentially, you should be able to explain to people why they should buy from you rather than your competitors with a simple message.
Finally, you want to think about your business’ values. What we mean by that is, what are the core principles you want to be associated with. mmunic, for example, is focussed on being expert and friendly, among others. This reflects in the content that we put out and the interactions we have with our customers.
Colour & Imagery
Think of some of the biggest brands around – Apple, McDonalds, what springs to mind? It is the colours and images associated with the name. Your logo and the colour scheme you use when you promote your brand is what people will learn to associate with you. You want to choose something that reflects your defined brand message quickly. The physical assets that you advertise with are the absolute core of your brand.
Colour psychology and typography are complex arts. These factors promote different emotions in viewers – a child focused brand would never employ the muted colours of a luxury clothing company, for example. The people over at Wix provide a comprehensive deep dive into the importance of logo design.
It is worth investing in quality brand imagery executed by a professional if this is not something you are capable of doing yourself – this is going to give the most positive impression to potential customers. Furthermore, logos made DIY in programs such as Canva are not licensed for use as such, which could cause issues for your business as you continue to grow.
Now you’ve defined your branding, you need a way to make people aware of it. Time to employ the power of content. The channels you decide to use to promote your brand are in fact part of the brand itself – a big one being social media. Are you an expert authority in your field? There are various ways to achieve this, social proof being one of them. This can take the form of customer reviews, and blogs for example.
You need to consider who is using the platforms you employ similarly. If you’re trying to reach Gen-Z, you can’t ignore TikTok – but if your target audience was, say, homeowners, the same strategy would be pointless. Look to articles such as this one from Sprout social to give you up to date demographic information.
When posting across social media, or on your website, consider the impression your content is giving. If you defined your business earlier as “friendly”, you need the content you put out to show that. Think “personal” posts and timely, polite replies to commenters.
Gone are the days where businesses are faceless – in 2023, brands have personality. We touched on this briefly when defining your brand: people who view and interact with your brand can develop an all-important personal investment and connection when you show that you share the same values as them.
If you’re struggling with this aspect, it might help for you to define your target customer – you can do this by imagining a specific person or few people that you want to buy from you. Think about their age, occupation, hobbies, wants and needs. This person has a unique personality that you want to appeal to – and mimic!
Above all, your personality should be genuine and sincere. Not only will this attract the customers you want, those that align with your message, but it will make it much easier to put out content. A win-win!
Like Rome, brands aren’t built in a day. Some marketing theory states that consumers must be exposed to a message seven times before they are susceptible to it, and that is why branding takes time to establish. Whilst your brand imagery forms that all-important first impression that will grab attention and push people to engage further, building that association between your company and what it stands for will take a while. This is especially true if you are rebranding something existing. For this, consistency is key. Sticking to the purpose and principles you defined at first every time you put out a bit of advertising, or interact with a customer, is what will make your brand both recognisable and synonymous with a culture.
By being consistent with your message, you also develop the credibility and trust people have in your brand. Delivering on your promises and being genuine will help you build that important positive reputation among your audience.
The important bits
To summarise, when beginning to develop your own branding, you want to clearly define a couple of core values which you want people to associate with your business, and then push this message consistently with the use of strong and clear imagery, colours, content and interactions with your audience.
It’s important to keep your message and interactions genuine and real to you and your vision to attract the right customer base and make things as easy as possible for yourself! Remember that it might take a while before you see the results you are after.
Nailed your branding, but still not seeing the results you hoped for? We have you covered. The team at mmunic has over / years experience in marketing amazing brands over email and social media. Get in touch today for a completely free, informal chat with a member of our team where we can begin to help you with your marketing strategy.