Your brand is more than just your company or product name. It's one of the best ways of setting yourself apart from your competitors. Unfortunately, many business owners are confused as to what “branding” really means and how it affects their company.
In a nutshell, your brand value reflects the values your company holds. It embodies your company's history, vision, and mission. It also stands as your promise to your client with regards to what they can expect from the products and services you offer.
Consider brands like Nike and Apple. These two companies success can be attributed to how well their brands reflected their core values. Nike's logo and “Just Do It” tagline resonates not just with athletes but people who are looking to channel their drive to succeed. Meanwhile, Apple's “Think Different” slogan makes it clear to everyone that the company is all about developing the best and most innovative products that are within everyone's reach.
Defining your brand and the core values it embodies is challenging as it entails time, patience and a little bit of self-discovery. Here are five ways to establish your business' core brand values:
1. Pick Values That Resonate With Your Business
Discovering your company's core brand values is a challenging process. One way to go about this is to make a list of traits that are important to you. But this should go beyond listing down nice sounding adjectives like “trusted” or “reliable.” You have to dig deeper and look beyond your idealized vision of a perfect company.
You can utilize your own negative experiences with other brands. For example, your stay at a glamorous B&B with perfect amenities might have left you feeling disconnected by its cold and snobbish staff. So instead of focusing on “great amenities,” make your mark by offering services that will make your “customers feel welcomed” and loved. And once you’ve chosen values that truly resonate with you, start focusing your energies on that.
2. Be the Best Representative of Your Values
What do your customers say about your brand? Are they impressed with your customer service or with the low price? Find out what traits your customers already associate with your brand and build on that.
Let's say your customers love the effort you make in answering their queries, then you can make “going the extra mile to answer your questions and meet your needs” as your core value. And since you're already known for it, make sure you keep representing your core values through advertisements and innovations.
3. Understand Who Your Competitors and Customers Are
You should also consider what your customer needs and expects from your brand while also taking into account what solutions are already being offered by your competitors. Analyzing what your rival is offering can reveal a gap that you can fill, or it can give you ideas on how you can offer a different solution that will better reflect your values.
4. Create Ways to Showcase Your Brand
Once you have established your core values, you have to think about how you can simplify them down to a few key words that will act as a reminder for your business team. Think Coke's “Taste Happiness” or Nike's “Just Do It” slogans. This will also help your employees understand and live your values.
Having clearly defined core values will also make it easier for your company to showcase your brand. Aside from your logo, tagline or slogan, there are also other methods you can use to push your brand, like creating your voice or using a unique color scheme.
5. Develop Relationships That Embody Your Values
You can also strengthen your core brand values by using it when building business relationships. Refer to these values in your recruitment and marketing and sales strategies. Hire people who believe in the same values and who are willing to share and spread these ideals.
It's essential that you establish your core brand values from the start. These will act as the building blocks of your business and will attract consumers who believe in the same values.[Featured image via Pixabay]