Is your brand thought of by consumers in the same way that you think? Brand influence changes, but those closest to a brand will not necessarily notice. Susan Gunelius of brandcurve asked readers to say what first descriptive word popped into their heads about 5 well-known brands: Coca-Cola, Dell, Ford, Nike, and Budweiser. She didn’t state the sample size of participants, but the results may surprise you for some of these brands.
If you’re a startup/ small business, branding is something that may be even more important to you than to an established company. A lot of new entrepreneurs, especially those working online, may not have much familiarity with branding and identity. It goes beyond logo design and corporate identity design. Take a closer look at the difference between branding and corporate identity.
If you are in fact just starting out and do not have much of a brand, you can control your brand destiny.
- What thoughts, ideas, descriptions do you want your brand to be associated with?
- Who is your target market? If you don’t know, you’d better decide.
- Are you targeting the right demographic with your advertising and promotions? Gimmicks are useless unless your target market is associating your brand with the specific ideas you want.
- What is your brand’s benefits to your target consumers, as far as you are concerned? Are you saying that in your marketing campaigns, your website design?
- Is your logo unique and memorable, without drawing any negative connotations?
This list barely touches the scope of building a brand, though it’s a start. If your business is small, you probably do not not have a full-time agency to promote you. Being aware of some of these points helps you be prepared for that time when you do hire an agency. In the meantime, you can do some business self-promotion.