Building a great brand is never once-and-done. It’s more than a name, logo and graphics. It’s a frame of mind — an experience — with a narrative that stays relevant and makes its audience part of the story.
Brand Building begins on a foundation of who you are, what you offer and why it matters to your audience. It’s shaped by how you connect emotionally with your customers, distinguish your business and, ultimately, deliver on your promise. It’s sustained by consistency, thought-leadership and calculated effort. And, when done right, it adds equity to your business.
But, a great brand is also a story that’s never completely told. Like building a personal relationship, you need to know your audience, understand their needs and always be there for them. You have to be creative and agile. That means listening to your customers and possessing the humility to question your own decisions.
The well-managed brand adapts to evolving markets without compromising the identity or diluting itself. If you can’t quickly respond to change in a beneficial way, perhaps you’ve dug in too deep or haven’t been paying enough attention.
To maintain a healthy brand, continually engage your customers and make them part of the story. Always watch your competitors for ways to distinguish yourself from them. Follow industry thought leaders and add to the narrative. Be willing to accept change and adapt to it. Stay out of your own way and allow the chapters of your story to unfold.
And your brand might just live happily ever after.
It’s important to look like you belong in your market. But, it’s more important to promote your own uniqueness. Remember, your brand and identity is about differentiation. It’s not about being like the others.
If any of these scenarios seem familiar, perhaps it’s time to consider retooling your brand.
The more experts you keep in your circle, the better you’ll be at determining your next great move. And, the better chance you’ll have that your crew will follow and grow with you.
So, if you find yourself continually restating your promise or steering your audience away from false perceptions, then it’s time to take a step back and see where things have gone astray. And, that might just require the objectivity that can only come from outside of your organization.
If your branding efforts aren’t branching out beyond your customer base, you’re missing an opportunity for it to take root in areas where it can add real value to your business.