Good branding influences buyer perceptions… and perception influences buyer behavior. If you can create a positive buyer perception through strategic branding you’ll stand out & be top-of-mind, add extra value to your clients, out-compete your competitors and ultimately grow your business.
Decades ago branding was simply your name, slogans, signs, and logo. Today, though, a brand is a bit more complex,
Now your brand is the perceptions people have when they hear or think of your company’s name, services, and products. It’s not just your logo, it’s the story you’re telling about your business and how that story is being understood.
And perhaps most importantly, your brand is your narrative of how you’re different than peers and competition – which is critical today in reaching, converting and keeping your clients and customers. So your brand influences buyer perceptions.
Hence, a well-crafted brand creates a positive perception of your business. It expresses the meaning behind your business – the ‘why’ if you will. And it creates a bond between you and your customers by keeping you top of mind
So how do you create a positive Brand perception?…
Through The 6 Pillars to a Thriving Brand which answer the following:
1. Who are you?
2. What do you do?
3. Why do you do it (beyond money)?
4. Who is it for?
5. Why should they care?
6. How will they find out?
1. Who are you?
Sounds easy, right? Not so fast. Not only the name of your company, not only who you are as the CEO, CMO or another major stakeholder in the company, but who is “your company” as a person? What is your company’s personality, what are its habits, core beliefs, weaknesses, and strengths? Is your company serious, or light-hearted? Efficient or more casual? Bold, authentic, smart, confident, playful? What would it be like to sit down and have a cup of coffee with your company? What would you talk about when you are not talking business?
2 What do you do?
Also sounds easy, right? The product or service that you provide your clients is just the start. The next step is to think about how ‘what you do’ is different than your major competitors. Branding is very much about differentiation. How are you different, how are you better, how do you stand out? This could be simply your product is the best around, kudos to you! It could also be that it is produced in an environmentally conscious way, it could be it is more functional and intuitive, it could be better because of style, efficiency, less stressful, free up time to do the things you love, more enjoyable to use… So what do you do better than anyone else? And if you don’t have something, then branding is even more crucial and it needs to create a ‘perception of importance’ through targeted and amplified visuals, as well as strategic messaging and a compelling brand story.
3 Why do you do it? (Money is not the answer)
You got into this for a greater purpose! Remember your childhood self that said I want to do something great in the world. Well, congrats! You’re doing it! Now, why did you want to do it in the first place? What is your bigger purpose? And what lofty goal/truth are you trying to achieve? Knowing this will have a huge impact on connecting with your audience!
4 Who is it for?
So, we find that a lot of business owners take a huge misstep here. They either ignore this vital step or don’t even know they need this. This is your Ideal Audience. If you can’t connect with them then you can’t sell to them. If you don’t know who they are then how on earth are you going to connect with them? You want to speak to them in a way that they will be engaged and felt heard. When you know your audience then it is much easier to connect and sell to them. If you don’t, good luck!
5 Why should they care?
Once you know your audience now you can talk to them in the right way and share with them the benefit, the value, how you solve their problem, and how you are different. You need to make your Ideal Client care. Create emotion in them and connect even deeper. This will ensure customer loyalty over time and great word of mouth marketing!
6 How will they find out?
This is all about your Brand’s Awareness and becoming top-of-mind when your Ideal client is ready to purchase. This can be done in a number of marketing channels from SEO to Pay Per Click to Social media marketing. The important thing here is not to just buy ads space but to tell a story and create a journey through the findings of the 6 Pillars of Branding. Create a successful campaign by knowing yourself and communicating to your ideal Clients about your ‘why’, their benefit and how you are different.
These questions are just the start. It’s up to you to be open and to be guided through this journey of Discovery. Wherever you are in your business, no matter your size now is a great time to start to consider these 6 questions and level-up your Brand. Sooner or later your competitor will do the same. So being a few steps ahead of them will be huge for your business growth. Take the plug and Up-Brand your company! Trust the brand process much like you are asking your Ideal customers to trust your company. The more you trust in branding the more your Ideal customers will trust, engage, and buy from you!
Adrian Parra, Creative Director + Co-Founder