Small Business Week – Day 4: How To Build Your Brand
How To Build Your Brand
Branding is all about consistency. It is all about consistency in your look, your voice, and the customer experience. When you can find the best customer results, the best customer experiences, and replicate those experiences on any media that’s when you’re most effective in communicating your value. Even if customers don’t understand your original value at first as long as you continue to be consistent and give them enough opportunities to interact with your brand they will get it. And that’s the true value of good branding.
The Mission & Vision of Your Brand
The mission and vision of your brand are two different things. The vision is your end goal, like where your company wants to be in 5, 10, or 15 years from now. The mission statement is what you are doing now to obtain that goal. I’ll give a good example of real-world examples. You know that the direction of your company needs to expand into a new industry or technology because that’s where your industry is headed. One day you are asked to change how you operate to accommodate a new customer. You as the owner, are divided by your new customer on one side and by your operations manager on the other side. What do you do? Well if you had a mission in place you would temper your decision by your mission statement and justify that with your manager. You might even take a step further to write it into your operating procedures. So the vision is where you want to be and your mission helps you get there day by day.
Some organizations might even have a hierarchy of vision and mission statements that all roll up into the company’s goals. Altogether supporting the vision of the company as a whole. You might have an independent branding and marketing vision and mission. Don’t get too overwhelmed, these types of companies dish out lots of money and it takes a long time and resources to execute. Luckily for small business owners, you can quickly make a decision and implement it. And, if it doesn’t work change it and start again.
This principle is exactly the same when it comes to your brand. Based on your mission you temper marketing, advertising, content decisions on your mission. This helps you create your marketing strategy, your customer profiles, your tone and voice, and so on. This also helps you effectively communicate your value proposition to your customers through being consistent.
Open Brand vs. Closed Brand
The exercise with small marketing team huddled in a meeting room with a whiteboard fleshing out ideas ultimately to make branding decisions with no customer input is closed branding. The other approach with companies allowing customer input to help guide the aspects of the brand and customer experience is called open branding. The open brand approach has become the more popular option recently because of how connected we are but I thought it would be valuable to talk about both and how a company transitions between the two because that is a thing.
Initially, as most startups do, they start off as a closed brand. They launch experience high sales then reach a plateau. They might have a good customer base to tap into for feedback. Or, in an ever-connected world might have unsolicited feedback from their customer base from social media. In the public’s eye, if they don’t fix the problem they could be obliterated. So naturally, a company will switch from closed to an open brand to fix its flaws.
Marketing collateral supports your brand’s efforts to communicate value to your customers. Again, derived from your mission and vision you create items that you feel best would communicate with your audiences. Some good examples obviously printed collateral. Although in a more digital world, print collateral might not be applicable to some demographics, printed items are relevant for the time being. Digital collateral is portable people can share it get instant feedback and you can update it and have people connect to it. Depending on who your ideal customer is. You might want to mix it up and do some of both.
Print Collateral – Digital Collateral Equivalent – How to Build Your Brand
- Business Cards – Email Signature, E-card
- Brochures – Website
- Flyers – Infographic
- Advertising Claims – Ratings, Testimonials
If you need some help working on any aspect of your brand. Buzz Boom Creative is here to help you. Fill out the form below to talk with a marketing consultant. Capture more sales, today!
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