When business owners dive into the branding portion of their business planning, it is easy to be swept away by all the fun color palettes, fonts, and textures that will bring your endeavor to life. However, starting with a business identity rather than strategy could be detrimental to your overall success down the road.
Save time, and money, with strategy. Here are a few questions to think about in order to get started.
In other words: what makes you different from your competitors?
Understanding your unique value proposition is something you’ve more than likely already started on. In many cases, this is what inspired you to take the leap into entrepreneurship. Making sure your brand strategy and business plan co-exist together is key in making your brand last. Looking at both your short-term and long-term goals will help you identify your audience, the visual representation of your business, and oftentimes assist in positioning yourself for success.
Understanding your target market of customers and clients is essential for success. After all, these are the people who will be providing your overall income! Establish a primary and secondary audience that you want to target. This will help determine your visuals and guide you in selecting the right palettes for the audience’s attention rather than leaning on the things you yourself are drawn to.
Need some examples of what an audience looks like? Check out these 5 steps to creating your ideal customer personas.
Warning: Do not skip this important step in creating your brand. Creating an identity that attracts the wrong audience can be costly in both time and money. Having 100 of the right audience that has a higher chance of return is better than having 10,000 people look at you and not need, or want, what you are offering.
Having an overall feeling your brand creates is something you will want to think about. This is where your business comes to life within the identity and showcases a personality and underlying aesthetic. Consider the audiences you selected above, but don’t be afraid to add a little bit of you when it fits. If you enjoy country living and western vibes, you do not have to feel obligated to be pushed into a city-style corporate setting. Find bits and pieces that will complement your passion with your audiences’ expectations.
Going back to your business plans, take a look at the 1-year plan, and even the 3-year plan. Are you hoping to expand your products and services as you become more established? Take this into consideration now before starting on the visual identity of your business.
For example: Coffee On Wheels just opened their doors and had a logo created with a coffee mug and wheels. However, six months later – the opportunity to open a traditional venue presented itself and now the owners want to expand into offering other beverages.
If the owners of Coffee On Wheels had noted they would someday want to be in a brick-and-mortar space, and maybe they wanted to expand their business offerings to more than just coffee, the visuals created for branding could have encompassed more of the future business. But, now the money and time invested into creating a brand for customers to recognize and recall for growth has to re-start from the beginning.
Taking the time to think through these four questions and strategizing your business’s brand is important. Not only will it save you time and money, but it will also allow for the momentum you build with your brand at your business’s launch to roll along with you – wherever you grow.
Don’t feel overwhelmed. This is an exciting time and a fresh start. Let’s work together to make sure your brand is just as strong as your passion. Contact us here to get started.
Sign up to receive an update when the latest episode drops - straight to your inbox!