Most small business owners don’t think about branding themselves. They assume only big corporations like the Targets, Starbucks and Nikes of the world are brand worthy. NOT TRUE! If you have a business, you have a brand. The big questions become: Is it the brand I want or not? Do your vision and your brand have synergy?
Your brand should set you apart from your competition and represent the values and personality of your service or product. It can symbolize passion, fun, confidence, trust, a set of values or a combination of them. Essentially, it should represent the experience your customers will have and what you want their perception of you to be. It is what you do and how you do it. Ultimately, building your brand is building your businesses reputation. If you have a strong brand, then you should know what someone will think or say when they leave your business.
A good brand allows you to have a clear message, which tells customers who you are and why they should choose you. But, the emotional experience of your brand and the experience it creates is what will keep customers coming back and telling their friends about the experience, good and bad.
Many business owners make the mistake of thinking that all they need to do is get a logo. Logo’s are part of a brand, but it goes far beyond that. It’s about giving your business a clear identity and personality that represents your vision, staff, product, services, surroundings, and strategy. When you believe in your brand, you don’t just pass out a business card (with that pretty logo!). You eat, sleep and breathe its philosophy. You are walking the walk and talking the talk. You are the ambassador, the cheerleader, and the PR person so you better believe in it and have a passion for it or no one else will either.
Your brand is as unique and individual as you are, and taking the time to identify it and build it will help set you and your business apart.