Branding is incredibly important for businesses of all sizes. It creates the first impression of your business, and it places you in categories in the minds of your customers and suppliers. (For example, are you regarded as a budget or a premium brand?) It is also the first thing that comes to mind when someone thinks about your business.
As branding is important for your business, it is also important to get your branding right. Here are some tips to help you achieve this.
Define the Brand
The first thing you need to do is to define your brand. You need to look honestly at your business, your products, and your services when you do this. You need to identify what sets you apart from your competitors and why customers should choose you instead of another business with a similar offering.
To do this properly you may have to ask other people to answer those questions as your opinions about your company may be very different from the way others perceive it. This can be difficult, but it is often the best way to get to the truth. With that truth, you can then decide to either build your brand around it, or make changes so that when you do create your brand, that it matches with reality.
This part of the process takes time and requires some research. But once you have defined your brand you can use the information to start building it.
Create the Brand
Creating your brand starts with your logo. Make it as good as possible, preferably by getting it designed by a graphic designer. You can spend money on a design agency if that is within your means, but it is also possible to get professional designers to create a logo for you on freelance websites like Freelancer.com.
Once you have your logo, put it everywhere. It should be on your website, all of your printed materials, your signage, your email signature, and all your company collateral.
Your logo will influence other parts of your brand too, so this should all be integrated. This might mean changing your website or getting new signage made.
You should also develop a tagline that clearly describes what you do. If you can't describe your business in five or six words your customers may have difficulty understanding what you do.
You should also make sure that you're consistent with your branding. This means ensuring that everything has the right logo, that the colors are correct, and that the tone of message is right. This applies to online and offline locations.
Finally, the best brands are those that people can relate to. How you achieve this depends on your business. For example, you can adopt a brand that is more formal if you are a law firm or accountant, but you should have something more personable and friendly if you are a fashion label or beauty brand. Brands are all about people, so think of your brand as a person that has its own character and personality.