Part of your planning should be thinking about your brand. Both your business brand and your personal brand. If you need any help with your branding, check out our Defining Your Brand workshop or take advantage of a coaching session with Kate, including our Brand Audit program.
What is a Brand?
Imagination without vision, is like a brand with no passion” Jaco Snoek
Perhaps now is the time to discuss what ‘brand’ really means. According to the American Marketing Association, the definition of a brand is a
“Name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers.”
“A brand is a customer experience represented by a collection of images and ideas; often, it refers to a symbol such as a name, logo, slogan, and design scheme. Brand recognition and other reactions are created by the accumulation of experiences with the specific product or service, both directly relating to its use, and through the influence of advertising, design, and media commentary.”
So, your ‘brand’ will be what sums up everything about you, your products, your ethos and your standards. In one neat bundle of name and identity, you are letting people know all about your business.
When positioning a brand, aggressively avoid becoming a “me too” by assertively being a “who else?” Crystal Black Davis
Your branding will be everything that identifies your business and makes it unique. This includes:
- Ethos – you need to define your brand ethos. What do you and your brand stand for?
- Logo – this is at the heart of your branding. This is the visual representation of your brand. Your logo should be easily identifiable, unique and should sum up your business ethics. If your business is making hand woven scarves using yarns dyed with natural fibers, a logo using futuristic fonts and primary colors is likely to be at odds with the look and feel of your brand.
- Colors – you should have key corporate colors which you use for everything related to your business. This helps to reinforce your branding.
- Store header/social media headers – your branding should stretch to your store and social media headers. These should use your corporate colors, your logo and can include other elements which brand your business.
- Typeface – while you don’t need your own custom typeface, it is important to choose one or two typefaces and stick to them so someone reading a piece of your marketing literature or a promotional graphic will instantly associate it with your brand.
- Strapline – you also need a strapline for your brand and this should tie in with your USP – Unique Selling Points.
“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.” Jeff Bezos