Branding your company may seem like a simple set of tasks. Choose a niche, a service or product to sell, a company name, a logo, business cards, a website and “Voila!” You are in business! It is true you can be “in business” with little effort. However, the level of success you experience will depend on whether you know — and use — fundamental, yet little known “secrets.”
Your understanding of these four secrets will catapult you ahead of your competition right from the start:
1. Your company’s values must be in alignment with your personal values
Your company brand represents you and all you stand for. You are going to spend many hours, days, months and years working in your business and representing your business. If your company is an accurate reflection of your personal core values, and not in conflict with any of them, the long hours you will spend working in your business will be much less stressful.
2. Your brand is created only in part by you
It is co-created by the public in how they view you. You have control over the message you send out about who your company is, what is stands for and what it promises. You have no control over how the message is interpreted by its recipients, your prospective customers. Your brand is also subject to the tides of public opinion.
3. Discovering, rather than simply imagining, who your ideal client is will determine your level of success
Crystallize your understanding of the customer you seek to serve. Fiction writers create a “back story” for each of their fictional characters before they write a word. They conjure biographical details about each character, describing what his life influences have been, which then informs his character. The author then literally “knows” how each character would behave in a particular situation and knows what his character’s response to various stimuli would be. As a business owner, you must “characterize” your ideal prospective customer in this same manner. This knowledge is necessary for you to craft products and services that your potential customer will respond to and buy.
4. The client is seeking an experience, not merely a purchase
Because of the vast number of choices available, consumers have become accustomed to expect a pleasant and desirable experience with any purchase. Consumers have been trained to believe that if they buy a particular product or service, which their lives will be transformed for the better, if even briefly.
5. Define Your Brand Strategy
Think of a brand approach as defining the limits of your procedure and the outline of your methods. Later, we will design the methods to make it happen.
Whether, and how soon in your company’s life, you master these fundamental secrets will be a determining factor in your enterprise’s success.