With a rise in entrepreneurship predicted in the next few years, building a brand has become more important than ever, regardless of the scale and size of the business. Whether you are a marketing director for an international conglomerate, an owner of a mom-and-pop shop, or even a freelancer, all have the task to create a successful, authentic brand.
Successful branding is an art– it’s modern-day digital storytelling. Much like art, branding requires authenticity to truly connect with the masses. The task of presenting yourself and your business in both the best and most authentic light is difficult, no doubt. With these tips on maintaining brand authenticity, you’ll be primed and ready to go tackle your own branding!
1. KNOW WHAT MAKES YOUR BRAND UNIQUE
To be honest to your brand, you must first know what makes it different from all the others. What do you offer that others cannot? It can be tempting to follow the trends and emulate those who are already much more successful, but hopping from trend to trend means you will never establish your own unique voice.
- What special skills or knowledge does your brand offer?
- What values do you and your brand prioritize and promote?
- When potential customers or clients think about your brand, what are the first things you want to come to mind?
- What kind of visual aesthetic best represents your brand?
Ask yourself these questions and work to create a clear image of what your brand is both ideologically and visually.
2. STICK TO A CONSISTENT MESSAGE AND AESTHETIC
There’s a reason why McDonald’s can’t get rid of their golden arches and a reason why brands like Celine have their own trademarked fonts. Good brands stand the test of time. One of the core values of standing the test of time is being consistent, amongst other values detailed by Hbr.org.
Your brand will not be solidified overnight. Though we live in a culture where instant gratification reigns supreme, valuable endeavors still require perseverance and patience. If you’re frustrated at the very thought of waiting for your brand to grow, read up on The Problem With Instant Gratification and find your motivation to stick with your brand long-term.
Once you have established what direction you want to take your brand it’s important to maintain that style across all platforms and media. Inconsistency can confuse customers, and make you hard to remember.
In this technological age, a stylish website is a must. Your website, merchandise, business cards, ads, and storefront should all create a very cohesive narrative. Recurring color themes, font choices, and keywords will all cement your brand in the minds of others.
Here are some facets that can help build a consistent brand:
- A stand out logo
- Using the same family of fonts
- A trademark color
- Quotes or slogans that can easily sum up your brand
However, consistency does not mean repetitive. Give your brand room to maneuver and grow over time.
3. UTILIZE THE BEST TOOLS AT YOUR DISPOSAL
Now that you’ve considered what you want to say, and have committed to a way of saying it, the next step is to find the clearest way to convey that message. Potential customers or clients want to know a brand is worthwhile with just a glance. Knowing who to hire to get the job done is tantamount.
A branding service worth its weight in gold will understand your brand and help you project your true value to the world. Anyone you consider working with should desire to communicate who you are with accuracy.
The more clear they are about their benefits, the better. For example, NAS Recruitment Branding provides a clear infographic on both their process but the benefits of using their employment branding services.
4. INCLUDE THOSE WHO WORK WITH THE BRAND
Utilizing the aid of those who already are a part of your business is an easy yet effective way to show authenticity.
Testimonials of employees and former customers can portray the brand’s true self! The words of those who engage with the brand on a frequent basis are powerful in their insight. Other ways to include those around you:
- Create a survey to understand what the brand means to those who engage with it frequently
- Enlist writer and designers already affiliated with the brand to create content for it; utilizing their innate understanding of the brand
- Be open to suggestions from those around you. Possibly even adding a suggestions box to a website