When branding your company, there are a few things you have to keep in mind.
Branding will affect the reputation of all businesses, large and small. As such, it will be well worth your while to use a graphic designer to help you with your branding, rather than trying to do it yourself. Building a brand takes time and does not happen overnight. When talking about branding on a bigger scale, it might well be the single most important thing to manage when it comes to your business.
Here are some tips to consider when you’re designing your brand.
- Whom do you sell to?
For any business, the first thing you need to take into consideration is who your audience is (or will be). Are you a business to consumer (B2C) or business-to-business (B2B) brand? This will influence your brand and will play a role in how it is recognized and accepted.
If you are for example a B2B brand and your logo looks like a cartoon in is designed with bright, garish colors, what does this say about your company? What will customers expect or think when they see your logo? It is good to try to be different, but when creating your logo and building your corporate design and brand identity, remember to take into account your audience’s potential reaction to your brand.
- What are your business’ brand values?
Your brand values will influence your corporate voice or tone along with any content you publish. Consider the audience you are reaching out to. What type of language will they be expecting from your company? If you are having difficulty thinking about your brand values, you may find it easier to think about your business as a person and describe it that way. At the end of the day, you need to distinguish yourself with your brand.
- What is your branding message?
Do you have an elevator pitch? Think about your key message and what you want people to take away when they interact with your brand. What sets your company apart from your competitors i.e. what makes you different? Do you have a Unique Selling Proposition (USP)? Why should someone buy from your company? Try to convey what working with your company will mean to customers, and what pain points you can solve for them.
- Your branding must be consistent
To build a successful brand all your branding has to be consistent. This includes copy and content on your social media, sales material, website, packaging, blog, emails and other correspondence. Train your front line staff and customer service team so they all deliver the same message. The brands that get this right are the leaders in their field.
- Update your brand when required
If you have been in business for a while, you might be losing sales because your brand is out of date. With time, brands can start appearing out of date and a bit stuffy. Design, just like fashion, changes over time. Design evolves depending on many factors such as cultural and technological changes. What might have worked in black and white print in the fifties will probably not work in video today. Be prepared to give your brand a refresh, or even a brand new look. When you do this, make sure you check your customer systems and brand values at the same time to ensure consistency. Ensure that you have a plan to update all material at the same time – not doing so might cause you to lose face. It might even make more sense to keep your corporate brand the same, but create new sub brands that sit under it for different product offerings or divisions. One of the best current examples of this being done extremely well is the Virgin brand.