Branding your business is easier than you may think. We break down the process for you here.
There comes a time in our lives, young or old, when something almost supernatural happens. Some may call it a “eureka moment” because you suddenly get this ground-breaking idea. For some people, this is the moment when they conceive an idea for a business.
Say you have an idea. Now what? Let’s face it, not everyone is a business person. For all those who took the initiative and want to start a business, but don’t know how to begin the process, this post is dedicated to you.
The difficulty of starting a business stems from education. Some of us know more in the beginning and some of us know less. This is all a part of the journey. The most overlooked part of the process of building a business is branding. There are statistics, articles, and books on how important branding is, yet people find it difficult and tend to rush to get it over with. Let me relive the strain on your business. Take my hand as I bring you on the journey of creating a powerful and engaging brand for your business.
You’ve got this idea in your mind. Where do you put it? How do you express it? Who do you tell? Well, first stop and think about it. I highly recommend taking a couple hours to brainstorm and give your imagination the freedom to build and create your future. Take your future and narrow it down to a specific vision. Leading business owners will tell you, “Plant your roots before you grow your branches.”
After you have a specific idea in mind, start creating a brand strategy. A brand strategy is an internal document that guides you in making all decisions. It’s the intention behind your brand. You shouldn't move or breathe if your brand strategy doesn’t allow it. Why? Because when you operate without direction, you leave your business open to interpretation. Your brand strategy heavily influences the next step.
Creating your brand is usually the most fun and exhilarating step, which can be both good and bad. Without a solid brand strategy, you’ll miss out on some very important steps in your brand's journey. During this step your brand strategy will come to life through the rough draft of your logo, marketing materials, and website.
Now that you have branding to complement your strategy, it’s time to develop everything we have created. What does developing the look and messaging of my brand look like? Great question. Up until this point we have said a lot of “yes”. Now, it’s time to say “no” to a few things. What ISN'T working? How can we do better? How can we refine our good ideas into something captivating? These are the types of questions we will be answering.
It’s easy to break things up but, putting them back together is a bit more difficult. You’re not allowed to move on to this step until you have a defined vision for your brand. This part of the process isn’t about making any major decisions. Producing the final copy is purely focused on polishing up your brand for the public.
Not so fast, you’re not ready! Have you tested your branding? How do you know people like your branding? Just send the final look to a few people you trust to get their thoughts. See what they think, listen to how they respond. The point of this step is to see if you've missed anything. Trust me, you ALWAYS miss something when creating a brand. You can skip the test and develop steps to get faster results, but quicker doesn’t mean better. Remember your brand is like a baby (seriously). Take the time to nurture it, and test it out as much as you can.
The big day you’ve been working toward is finally here! It’s time to unveil your brand to the world. Congratulate yourself on all your hard work, but don’t get too comfortable. A brand is never truly finished, so look for opportunities to refine and improve your imagery and messaging in order to adapt to the years ahead.
In conclusion, you will never be successful if your brand isn’t well-thought out and polished. You have to hold it and kiss it goodnight. Sometimes you have to change its diaper! I hope this relieved some of your stress and educated you on the process of creating a brand for your business.