How to Develop a Meaningful Brand
When launching a new business, budgets can be tight, prompting some entrepreneurs to create their business's brand without professional support. It’s no surprise that taking the DIY route to branding can lead to some common misconceptions and mistakes if you’re not a brand strategist.
While professional support is ideal for brand development, it’s understandable that in the early stages of business, you may choose to create your brand independently to launch the business. If this resonates with you, read on for clarity and guidance for creating a meaningful brand.
DIY Guide to Brand Development
Before we get started, it’s important to know what a brand is and why it matters. A brand encapsulates your vision, values, approach, and actions in the world. It embodies the entirety of interactions between your business and the consumer. A brand encompasses both tangible and intangible elements, it’s a holistic experience compilated from each touchpoint between your business and the consumer.
A brand is a collection of impressions, emotions, values, aspirations, and ideas associated with a company.
The Heart of Business
Most people think logo when they hear the word brand. In reality, the logo is just one slice of the pie. A brand is a holistic experience, it's the vision, mission vlaues.alñskdjfalñskdjflaskdjflñaksjdfl
Why Your Brand Matters
Your brand has the power to either make or break your business. It serves as the initial impression of your company and is often the deciding factor for consumers when making a purchase. Powerful brands give businesses the ability to command higher prices (people are willing to pay more for brands they admire!), attract top-tier talent, differentiate from competitors in a saturated market, and persuade consumers. Strong brands build awareness, trust, credibility, and business value; they also make the sales process a lot easier by attracting consumers and communicating unique value in a meaningful way.
Your brand can drive sales and success!
A Simplified Process to Creating a Brand for Startups or Entrepreneurs who are Launching a Business
I take my clients through a collaborative process to get to the heart of the business and what truly matters.
I’m a fan of Simon Sinek. If you’re not familiar with his work, check out this Ted talk where he explains “The Golden Circle” - a simple framework for crafting your brand message. Key takeaway: Begin with why, providing customers with a compelling reason to be interested, then delve into how your business fulfills its mission, and end by stating what you're selling. We are emotional creatures, and emotion is part of our decision-making process.
A brand message is much more compelling when it evokes emotions and gives consumers a reason to care, rather than rattle off a list of specs.
When it comes to brand development, it’s crucial to think of the consumer first. The consumer should be the star of your story.
Scroll below for questions to spark thought and help you form a strategic brand.
What is the problem that your company exists to solve?
Who is affected by the problem?
The folks at Strategyzer created this wonderful template to help consider consumer perspectives.
Crafting your Message
Do: always think about the consumer and why they should care about what you’re saying
Don't: list off facts and specs without explaining the benefit (pain reliever, gain creator)
Developing your Brand Manifesto
I’ve thrown a lot of questions out at you! If you’ve made it this far: well done! Now you can take a step back and look at your responses for a view of the big picture as we develop a key to your brand foundation: your brand manifesto.
Your brand manifesto is a way to communicate your vision, mission, and values with purpose. It steers the direction for your company and brand identity.
You can follow this simple framework that I developed to create your brand manifesto. The following provides key building blocks and sample statements to shape your brand manifesto.
Brand Manifesto - Base Framework
The output of this framework can be used as a base for your brand manifesto and story.
How to Develop a Meaningful Brand - Basic Rules
Start your brand message with ‘Why’. Talk in terms of consumer needs and interests. Why are you here? Why should consumers care? Why should I choose you over competitors?
Create a Unique Value Proposition that’s clear & compelling
Write a manifesto to guide your brand and business
Focus on consumer value and benefit
The brand development journey can feel daunting: whether you’re solo or with a team and need to align stakeholders, a lack of brand expertise and time can be a real challenge. If you’re ready to invest in your brand strategy development, I’m here to help! Contact email@example.com to build a bright brand and strong future together.