Tell me about your company first, then about your brand. You’re not alone if you thought the two were the same thing. Indeed, this ambiguity may be the reason why many businesses dismiss branding and fail to capitalize on their key differentiator to grow their business.
The distinction between a business and a brand is that a business is the services it provides, whereas a brand is the image it projects. Of course, growing either is not that simple. Let’s talk about what makes your business a brand and why you need branding
A brand is more than just a name, logo, and tagline.
It’s what existing and potential customers think of when they think of you. It provides an answer to the question:
What do you want to be remembered for?
Your brand consists of the following elements:
- how your customers perceive and react to your brand
- how they identify, recognize and experience your business.
The fundamentals of a strong brand
Your brand is the outward manifestation of your internal culture. To be credible, your actions must correspond to your words. As a result, every employee and every action shapes your brand.
A strong brand is distinct and timely. It will allow you to express the genuine value of your business and bring more brand clarity and consistency to unite employees around a shared purpose.
Think about your favorite brands. Consider your own personal experiences: we’re all customers with favorite brands. Think about why these are your favorite brands. This may provide you with useful information about what distinguishes brands.
The Effects of Branding on Business
The harsh reality is that businesses do not technically own their brand. Your brand is the image that your company projects, but it is determined by how customers perceive your company.
Think about Google. What are your thoughts? You will surely associate the name with the internet. This is a brand name that not only stands out but also elicits an association or emotional response in consumers. Also, brands like Charmin, Pampers, Duracell, and more. Charmin is soft, Pampers ensures restful nights and fun days, and Duracell goes on and on.
But, as a small business, how can you ensure that you’re growing your brand while growing your business if you don’t have access to billions of dollars in advertising?
Growing Your Business and Brand
Growing your business typically entails broadening your scope and providing your customers with additional goods or services. At its core, this is all about making more money. We understand that your goal for the year was to expand your business. Keep in mind, however, that expanding your brand is likely to result in more money.
Customers are willing to pay up to 50% more for businesses that make a difference. As previously stated, consumers control your company’s brand narrative, not you. Building your brand usually entails serving a larger purpose beyond your services and giving your company a soul. So, what is the community in which your company operates saying? What are people talking about when they mention your company besides your services?
As a barber, perhaps the brand is about quickly getting the best cuts done. Consider getting out in the community if you want to get ahead of the narrative and give your brand a more human feel. Be the barber who offers free haircuts to the homeless during the back-to-school week or one weekend per month.
Find what is essential to your business.
Building your brand may earn you the loyalty and adoration of your customers, but they will be few and far between if you allow your business to suffer.
This is why learning how to balance both is critical. Build your business in the short term while keeping your brand identity in mind in the long run. It is easier said than done, but it is not impossible. Just ask Apple, Samsung, Google, Microsoft, Walmart, IBM, General Electric, Amazon.com, Coca-Cola, Volkswagen, Shell, Disney, Target, or Nestle.
Need help to grow your business and brand? Words On Is can help you reach out to your customers and get next-level results. Reach out to us at www.wordsonus.com.ng to see what your business can become.