Brands are powerful, some of the biggest companies on the planet are iconic brands; when you think of Google, Coca Cola, Amazon, Apple it’s probably their logos and branding that will immediately come to mind. Such is the power of these brands that if a completely different word were written in the same font as their logo, you would still associate it with the original brand.
Why Branding is Important
If you run a small business, you may be wondering why branding is necessary for your company. The fact is that all businesses need branding, your brand is what differentiates you from your competitors, your brand is what makes your business recognizable, and represents your business and what it stands for. Brands have power, and branding is the key to setting your business apart from the rest.
The power of a brand cannot be denied; it is the reason why people choose to buy branded goods and are happy to pay the extra price to get them. Even if the branded product worked as well as the unbranded one, many people would still happily pay more for the branded ones. The reason why people do this is because they are happy to pay to be associated with a particular brand. They may want to impress their friends and family, or they want a status symbol, whatever the reason, the value placed on the brand is the key to its success. This means that the product has something that goes beyond its functional use, and instead projects a lifestyle or ideal that the customer identifies with or wants to aspire to.
Why Consistency Matters
For your brand to be as effective as possible, it is vital that it is consistent. Consistency is essential for many reasons:
- It makes your brand easily identifiable
- It communicates a specific message about what your business is and what it stands for
- It adds more value to your brand
- Recognition of your brand will be built up faster
- Your brand will look more professional
In short, consistency is vital to prevent your brand from being mixed up with other brands and, strengthens its value.
Creating Your Brand
As consistency is so important, it is especially useful to get your branding right from the outset; this prevents you from needing to do all the hard work involved in establishing your brand more than once.
When planning your brand, consider the following factors to help you decide on what it will look like and represent:
- What is your business all about?
- What are your business’ values?
- What is your unique selling proposition (USP)?
- Where will you position your brand in the market? Is it a high-end luxury brand, or is it a low price, value brand?
- What is your brand personality?
Thinking about these kinds of questions will help you to build up a picture of what your brand stands for, what it looks like, and how it should be positioned in the market.
How to Create a Consistent Brand
Once you have established what your brand looks like and its personality, it is time to start turning it into a reality.
A starting point for many business owners is to get a logo designed that fits with their brand and what it stands for. The next step is to start using your logo consistently. To ensure that their logos and communications are kept consistent, many larger businesses produce brand guidelines. Essentially, brand guidelines are a manual that explains where and when the company’s logo should be used, how it should be positioned, which colors should be used in marketing materials, the style of writing that should be used, how the company should be referred to… the list goes on! While producing brand guidelines may seem a little over the top, it does demonstrate the importance of consistency, as well as showing the lengths that companies go to, to protect their hard work in establishing their brand.
The Little Things Matter
When creating a consistent brand, the little things matter; use an email signature creator to ensure that all members of your staff have consistent signatures on their emails, make sure that your website and social media activity all use the same tone of voice and are written in the style of your brand’s personality.
Although it may seem like a lot of work, putting in the effort from the beginning to create a consistent brand, and then working to protect it will help to build your brand’s identity.