Every business owner dreams of having a brand as well known in its field as, say, Kleenex or Xerox; a brand that becomes so widely used that its name is incorporated into colloquial expression. While you may not achieve the same amount of integration as these examples, your brand is still what sets you apart from your competitors. If you build a strong brand that appeals to potential customers, you can make choosing your business over a competitor an easy or even automatic decision.
What Makes Up a Strong Brand Identity?
Before you can build a strong brand, it helps to know what a strong brand identity actually consists of. Your business needs to have:
- Character: Your brand’s character is all the things your customers think of when they think of you. Being able to influence what comes to mind when a customer hears your business’s name is at the heart of what it takes to build a strong brand.
- Customers: You cannot build a brand in a vacuum. Your customers are an integral part of your brand. Your typical customer, how they view themselves and how your company meets their needs are all important pieces of your overall brand identity.
- Consistency: Consistency doesn’t mean that everything you produce always has to look, feel or sound exactly the same. However, it does mean that your customers should recognize your website, logo, or Facebook page on sight. Consistent logos, color themes, and attitudes are important.
How to Build a Strong Brand Identity
Once you understand what constitutes a strong brand identity, you’ll find it easier to build one. Here are three basic steps to help you build a strong brand for your business.
- Define your vision and mission statement. Knowing what your company stands for is important. Spend some time writing out a vision statement and a mission statement that encompass what your business means to you, and your most important goals for the company. Give some serious thought to how you’d like to see your company grow over the next five years, too, as this can have considerable bearing on your vision and mission statements as well.
- Involve everyone. Just like Rome wasn’t built in a day, it also wasn’t built on the shoulders of just one person. Everyone in your company must be involved. Share your vision and mission statements. Coach employees and contractors on how to conduct themselves when representing the company. Inspire them with your ambitions for the long term.
- Provide resources. To build a strong brand, your employees and contractors need to have access to certain tools. Provide logos, templates, scripts, and everything else your employees might need to make sure you maintain the consistency necessary to build your brand identity.
A strong brand identity is imperative for any business to succeed in its given field. While you might not achieve the widespread notoriety of wildly successful companies such as Kleenex and Xerox, you want your brand to be well enough known within its field that choosing you for a product or service is an easy, even automatic, choice. By making sure that your business embodies the above principles, and taking steps to ensure that you and your employees stay focused on what your company stands for, you can build a strong brand that will only grow stronger over time.