Brand – The Reason For Being
- What is a Brand?
- A Quick Survey
- Understanding the word Brand
- What do you think of when you hear the word Brand?
- Brands and Small Business
What is a Brand?
According to Wikipedia, a brand is “a name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s product distinct from those of other sellers”
A brand, according to us is why you do business. It is how you do business. It is how your customers see you. It is how you set the culture for the employees of your company.
A brand is who you are
A Quick Survey
Lets see what the word brand and some brand names make you think when you hear them.
Understanding the word Brand
The word brand has a popular perception in line with the definition as on Wikipedia but it is a concept that reaches a lot further than that. A brand in modern business is the business identity. It is how your customers perceive your company to be. It is how your employees react to the company. It is why a business exists – someone started the company for a reason. Whether it was to create a new product to fulfil a need or a new services to make life a little simpler for customers – a brand is the essence of your business.
A brand is a story that is always being told.
You have to be able to tell your story to your customers and employees. When your customers start telling your story to other customers, you have succeeded in creating brand value for your company.
What do you think of when you hear the word Brand?
If your response if Coke, McDonalds or Ariel, you would be in a majority of people that would answer this question with recognisable names. However, would you be astonished to hear that every business is a brand, that everyone of is a walking and talking brand?
When you were filling out the answers in the form above, you expected all of the names in there and your answers told a story of how you see those names in your mind. It is your perception of those companies. You probably did not expect to describe yourself as a brand and yet we do it all the time in day to day life.
Your Personal Brand
People interact with you based on your personal brand. Your friends like and love you because of certain personality traits and that, in essence, is your personal brand. If you simplify it , your personal brand is your personality. A business is no different in that every business has a personality. It may not be popularly recognisable at first but it is a brand none the less. It tells people about you and your aspirations for your business. Dont forget your business exists only because you want it to.
Business is no different, they build up a reputation and a brand and over time, they strive to live up to that image and evolve with the times.
Brands and Small Business
Just because you run a small business does not mean that you dont have a brand. You have a brand with no or little value and how you build up that value is down to how you interact with customers and employees. It is down to how you respond to complaints and interact with people on your social media channels.
If you have been business for a while and need to build brand value, you still need to understand yourself first. How can you market what you do not understand?
It is of paramount importance that, as a small business, you understand what your business stands for before doing anything with your brand.
In short it is down to you
My Top Five Branding Tips
- Know WHY you are in business
- Define the brand proposition
- Define the brand value that you think you stand for
- Create a consistent message for the people you interact with – this includes all your corporate stationery, website and marketing communications
- Create a marketing strategy in line with your brand values
Remember that in todays internet age, buyers need more than USPs to buy from you – people have a need to understand why they should buy from you over your competitor. So know why you are doing what you are doing and then continue to deliver that message to the market.
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