Building a Better Business with Branding
Whether a one-person show or a multinational conglomerate, brand awareness will make or break the success of a business. Strong branding is the intangible that will elevate a product by adding caché. When several similar products are on the market, good branding can elevate one above the others, and bad branding can steer clients and customers away regardless of quality.
Know What Branding Is—And Who Needs It
Branding sets a business apart in some way, with a catchy slogan, a sleek and unique design, or a story that makes it seem different. The best branding is often a combination of these—a composite that creates an experience for the consumer.
But branding and branding awareness aren’t just for the little guys—every successful business guards its brand very carefully and continually cultivates the brand image. Additionally, all aspects of the brand have to work. Even a simple logo design can create strong feelings in consumers—both good and bad—and can build or destroy credibility.
What Sets a Brand Apart
To cultivate long-lasting brand awareness, the message needs to catch attention in positive ways. A sleek logo design that creates a strong impression is a great place to start. Instant recognition is so important, but is only the beginning.
Branding now has to work across several channels in both traditional and social media. Producing visuals like photos with catchy captions, or regular short and engaging videos can keep customers involved in what the brand is doing now and where it’s headed in the future.
Visually appealing design, a catchy slogan, and a story or narrative that prompts an emotional response combine to create a brand with a holistic experience for the consumer.
When Branding Goes Bad
Even large companies can make a left turn or get off track in their branding. But whether a business is as small as an individual freelancer, or as large as Nike, the same things can damage the brand:
Murky messaging: If people aren’t sure what the brand is about, they’ll probably go elsewhere.[Text Wrapping Break]
Overly complicated: Nobody wants to work that hard to understand what a business is actually selling.[Text Wrapping Break]
Tone-deaf: Careful editing is key. A brand that releases a product or message that is perceived to be racist, sexist, or otherwise exclusionary and negative can cost, big time. [Text Wrapping Break]
If a company gets off track with the brand, correcting the course as quickly as possible is essential.
Clear Messaging Leads to Growth
Values are key—a customer wants to feel like the brand understands them and shares similar values. The more closely a customer identifies with a brand, the more they’ll choose the brand exclusively.
When a company or business takes the time and makes the effort to establish a professional, clear, and on-point brand, it’s making an investment in itself, explains Forbes. The best-known brands with the most loyal customers keep that loyalty by ensuring messaging is relevant and on-trend. Loyalty leads to business growth and sustainability in the long term.