While an excellent product or service is the key to helping your business climb to the top of your industry tower, branding is what will get you through the front door. It doesn’t matter what your business idea is, if you want to bring in customers, you’re still going to have to convince people that they need what you’re selling, and branding is the best way to achieve that.
But contrary to popular belief, branding is so much more than simply choosing a logo and a catchy tagline. A brand is what defines a business - goals and values, strengths, and many other factors play a part in making a successful brand. Trying to run a business without these things would be like a person with no personality being surprised when others don’t recognise them. To have a brand is to have an identity.
Still not convinced? Here are a few points to help you understand the importance of branding.
Branding builds a solid foundation for the start of your marketing journey
If you’re serious about your business succeeding, then you probably already recognise the need to distribute responsibilities between your employees. No one person can be expected to do everything, after all. But how can you guarantee that everyone within the business will be able to stay on the same page while still working in different sectors?
The answer is by using branding as a framework to help build your business up from the ground level. Whether someone is working in sales, product design or marketing, if they have your brand’s image, values, and language in front of them, then it becomes infinitely easier to keep your business’s message consistent across everything you do.
This is why it’s so important to make sure you don’t think about branding as a static concept. It’s important to imagine how your brand fills the different human senses - how it moves. What would your brand’s jingle or soundtrack be like? If your brand were to fill up a public booth somewhere, what materials, colours and designs would it use? How would a human representative of your brand look and behave? Branding is about making your audience feel certain emotions and relate to you in a specific way, so by asking yourself these questions, you’ll be sure to take your branding to a level above the competition.
Branding is capturing who you are and what you do in as little time as possible
The introduction of social media and the wider internet as a whole has led to the public exposure of countless more brands in the blink of an eye. Surprisingly though, this change has benefited the consumer a lot more than businesses. With easier access to competitors than ever before, the time each individual business gets to prove itself has shrunk dramatically, meaning that sometimes, a logo and a few lines of text is all your potential customers are going to see before making a decision on whether to move on.
It’s in this way that modern branding has transformed into a method of communicating your brand’s values, personality and beliefs in an instant, making your customers fall in love with you at first sight. The best and most successful companies have mastered the art of condensing the entirety of their brand into the purest version of who they are, as the most important parts of branding can be found in those little details. For example, instead of writing a long paragraph of copy about how fun-loving your business is, the same message can be conveyed using the colours, fonts, and imagery of your logo in a fraction of the time by showing instead of telling. Trust your customers to be smart enough to figure out who you are on their own.
Keeping your brand simple will generally work in your favour, despite how uncomfortable it can feel at first. If your branding is short, snappy, and to the point, then people will remember you, even if they don’t need you right now. How many times has someone seen a McDonald’s advert on their morning commute to work and then later noticed the bright and friendly ‘M’ logo on the side of the street during their lunch break, the whistling logo playing in their head as they order a Filet-O-Fish? It’s a lot more common than you might think.
Branding builds trust with both consumers and employees
Regardless of who you are or what your business does, putting out public information on what you do and how you do it is a surefire way to build up your credibility. It’s like showing the world the inner workings of your business’s heart and all the love that it has to give.
For customers, it’s important that they know that you understand their needs better than anyone else and can provide them with exactly what they need. Once you’ve shown them the quality of your brand, keeping consistency throughout all the areas of your brand will let them know that they can count on you for the exact same qualities they love every time they return.
As for employees, branding can help to show them that working for you will give them purpose and that the ways in which contributing to your business will provide their own lives with meaning. Additionally, your brand’s value and personality are ways for you to communicate how your business treats its employees, letting potential workers know they won’t just end up as another cog in the machine but become a valued member of the team.
Build a brand that’s unique to you
At the end of the day, the rules for making a successful brand aren’t set in stone, and the best brands will have a degree of flexibility to them. Simple branding is great for catching a customer’s attention, but long-form content is still a very necessary part of keeping people engaged once that initial spark has died down. And while branding should act as the foundation for your business, this foundation can still be subject to change. Many of the biggest companies in the world have made changes to their branding over the years and ended up better for it in the long run.
Just make sure that if you’re going to change your branding, there’s a good reason for it, and you keep hold of the things that make you, you.
Need a helping hand in designing your brand? Read our guide on how you can create a stand out brand in seven easy steps here!
Or, if you want some one-to-one guidance on how to build your brand, book a call now and we'll walk you through every step of the way.