Branding!! It’s a science and an art! But what even makes a brand a brand?!
Honestly, the word brand is soooo general and can easily be twisted into something it’s not, or pigeonholed into just colors, fonts, logos, etc! But I cannot put enough emphasis on the fact that your brand is so so much more! It is your reputation. It is everything for your business!! Your brand is your magic secret sauce, that if done right, will keep people coming back over and over and over again to buy from you. That’s what we freaking want!
Ok let’s think about a brand like this… Imagine your brand as a roof. That roof is held up by pillars, secured to a foundation, and rooted into the ground so it doesn’t crumble. Those pillars are your brand pillars, the foundation is your mission, and the roots are your why! When you are strong in each of these areas, you have a powerful and deeply rooted brand!
The Roots: The Why
The why of your brand! To quote Simon Sinek, “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” The why is the core belief behind your brand, it’s literally WHY it exists, and the reason why you get out of bed in the morning to get to work! It’s your reason for being. Let’s take Jovi for example. The WHY behind Jovi is to free the women of the world from the pain that holds us back. Jovi just happens to do that with technology that brings relief from period cramps. Every single decision we make as a brand points back to our why! It is the ROOT of it all!
The Foundation: The Mission
Your brand has to have a mission! It is WHAT you want to accomplish and the foundation for alllll of the decisions that you make in your business. This is your brand’s purpose. If there is anything that doesn’t support this mission, it’s got to go. For example, Jovi isn’t going to start selling curtains!! Like, how random!!! That shiz doesn’t do aannnnyyyything to support the mission. It would confuse customers about what the brand is and also would definitely not be financially beneficial!
Brand pillars!!! Let’s freaking gooooo, this is so so key! A brand is held up by brand pillars. These pillars are the key elements of your brand strategy and building these pillars strengthens your foundation! They’re also what your potential customers will base their first impressions of your brand off of. So let’s make sure they’re locked in!
Your purpose is the combination of your why and your mission! It is the reason that your business and brand is what it is. Your purpose has soooo much power, both when it comes to attracting customers and also employees! When people align with your purpose, they will come.
Your brand’s perception is how your audience thinks about you and interprets you based on their interactions with your visuals, messaging, experience with your product or service, online reviews, etc. etc. etc!
Now this can feel like it’s out of your hands, which is kind of true (remember, you can’t always please everyone!!!) BUT you have the power to find out exactly what people think about your brand – just ask! You can take the temperature of your customers with surveys and social media interactions. Allow their responses to inform your decisions when it comes to either altering OR maintaining certain aspects of your brand.
This is what I like to call the “fun pillar”!!! This is your VIBE, your mood, your tone, your culture. Do you know your vibe? Is your vibe clear to your customers? Make your brand visuals so good that people can tell it’s your brand before they see your name.
Same goes for your voice & tone when it comes to writing any sort of copy – think email marketing, social media captions, Facebook ads! If you want to stand out in your niche you HAVE to have a killer, defined, unique personality that attracts your customers and makes YOU and your brand the best choice!
Positioning! Your brand positioning consists of your ideal customer/who you appeal to, your niche, and where you’re at when it comes to your marketplace.
One of the most important things to think about when it comes to positioning, is your future positioning!! This is your time to DREAM BIG. Who would you like to appeal to in the future, what goal are you working towards, where would you like to be in the marketplace? Use your current positioning to always motivate you to keep growing and reposition yourself as you do!
Where are you promoting your brand, and more importantly, HOW?! Are you consistent in your messaging? Do you know who your greatest brand ambassadors are? What is your pitch? Make sure you are clear on all of this.
Also, there’s a big difference between brand promotion and sales promotion. Sales promotions seek fast and easy sales, while brand promotions build know, like, and trust with your customers to make them keep coming back to you! Solidify your presence in the marketplace so that they know where to find you and you can be the go-to for whatever problem it is that you solve with your business. Building that credible reputation is HUGE. Make it easy for your customers to find you too and keep your messaging consistent across all platforms!
And just like that, you’ve got a brand!!! The roots, the foundation, the pillars, they’re all holding it up. Building a brand is a freaking process!! It doesn’t just happen overnight. Let these pillars guide you to alignment whether you’re building a brand or reevaluating your current brand! Your potential for success is multiplied when everything is working together and deeply rooted!