How to build a Brand: 8 Steps

How to build a Brand: 8 Steps

How to build a brand
How to build a brand

In just 8 steps I will explain how to make it all work.

I am going to show you how to build build a brand and and achieve customer loyalty, awareness and have a competitive edge in the market as a result of successful branding.

But before we get deep let’s first understand:

What is a Brand?

First of all, a brand is a promise. And that is what people are interested in. Maybe more than the product itself. Imagine, two phones exactly the same but one has the Apple logo and the other doesn’t have a logo, which one will you pick? Of course, the one with the Apple logo because by owning it you will feel emotionally connected to the brand, you feel smart and accomplished. But your brand is defined by the customers’ overall perception of your business. So your brand must deliver. If customers regularly complain that the iphone has connectivity issues and the interface freezes a lot, the brand loses value. Deliver your promise.

A successful brand is consistent in communication and experience. They have uniqueness, audience knowledge, passion, consistency, competitiveness, exposure and leadership.

But how is it achieved?

Step number 1:

Determine your brand’s target audience!

Getting specific really helps. Create a message that meets their needs. Are you targeting college students? Are you targeting executives or the retired? You can’t really sell everything to everyone. You may want to know the age (21-25), gender(Male or Female), location(city or country sides), or Income level (low or high income earners) and level of education. This helps establish a brand position.

By narrowing your audience focus, your message becomes even clearer. You want to attract the right people. You cannot waste resources and marketing efforts on the wrong people.

Establish brand mission statement & pick a personality.

Clearly define your purpose and reflect your mission, the logo, tagline/slogan, voice, message and the personality itself.

Coca cola’s mission statement, “To refresh the world in mind, body and spirit. To inspire moments of optimism and happiness through our brands and actions.”

You can see their mission everywhere. A Christmas without Coca cola was considered the worst in Zimbabwe. They focus on every mind, body and spirit that’s why they say taste the feeling NOT the beverage. The beverage is limited to the body.

Now think of their personality. Its obviously different from Nyaradzo’s sahwira mukuru. Pick a personality that helps inform your tone and visuals. Describe your brand like a person. Fun, young, confident or family-oriented, caring and old fashioned.

You now know consumers and have created a statement that focuses on them, next step:

Do a competition research.

The goal is not to copy everything but to do it differently that’s brand differentiation. Study how they did it, how and why customers easily remember their names. Study their message and visuals, quality of products or services, marketing efforts and their reviews. How do they do it online and offline?

After that, Outline your offers and their benefits.

You need to be unique! Offer what no one else is offering. You become easy to remember. Since you know your audience better, give them a reason to choose you. It could be free support, Reduced costs or do you save them time? An iphone has a clean design that is easy to design and great processing power. Saves time, therefore its better than its competitors.

Create the brand logo, tagline, pick, colors & font.

Probably the most exciting piece to many. Often mistaken for the brand itself. The logo and colors are not the brand! They are your identity.

Your logo will represent you everywhere, you may need to hire an expert designer. Because you need a unique logo that is professional and timeless. An error by Pepsicola, over the past 10 years they have changed logos over and over again while Coca cola’s remained the same. Gotta be careful. Do not pick from the internet.

Write a catchy slogan/tagline, something brief. It can always be changed. Use your tagline to make a strong impression! The most popular ones: Shop at Powersales, where your money buys you more! Nyaradzo’s Sahwira mukuru or Hari yemadzisahwira by Chibuku.

It could be a metaphor “Redbull gives you wings”. Or a Rhyme,”Beanz meanz Heinz”. Literal description,”The world’s local bank”. A claim,”The people’s choice”.

Pick colors that convey the feeling you want to communicate. Also pick colors that distinguish you from competitors. You don’t just pick a black and red scheme because you love the colors! Not so cool, colors have meanings, they convey different messages. If you learn about color psychology, you will be able to do a perfect job.

Choose fonts. Pick a header and body font apart from your logo font. A font that is relevant according to your organizational mission.

Form a brand voice, message and elevator pitch.

The voice depends on your (i) Audience, (ii)Mission. And of course, industry. It could be Professional, fun but not silly, expert but not Bossy, helpful, smart, friendly, technical, promotional, conversational, informative. The list is endless. After this, build a message of, (i) Who you are, (ii) What you offer and (iii) Why people should care.

Use this to make a direct, emotional connection with clients. Simple and clear, “Improving lives with every product you purchase, TOMS will help a person in need. One for one”.

You now connect on a personal level in your blogs, posts, videos, TV and Radio ads.

An elevator pitch, speech or statement is a short, persuasive speech that describes and sells a product or service of a company e.g.

I am a graphic designer for the blurry. We transform start-ups to powerful brands hence empowering our clients through great results and growth.

We are determined to create an experience that goes beyond expectations.

Make the brand visible and alive.

Your brand should be reflected in everything people see, read or hear.

Visuals:

  • Logo
  • Colors
  • Marketing material
  • Website
  • Product packaging
  • Images
  • Letterhead
  • Business cards etc

Words:

  • Social media message
  • Voice & tone
  • Copy
  • Mission
  • Purpose & values
  • Brand promise
  • Slogan
  • Tagline

Intangibles:

  • Customer
  • Perception
  • Experiences
  • Personality
  • Culture
  • Values etc

Apply, extend, evolve your brand as you grow.

Building a brand doesn’t STOP with slogans or logos! Shape and evolve your brand as you expose it to more clients. Improve the experience as your budget for marketing increases. So remember;

  1. Determine your brand’s target audience!
  2. Establish brand mission statement & pick a personality.
  3. Do a competition research.
  4. Outline your offers and their benefits.
  5. Create the brand logo, tagline, pick, colors & font.
  6. Form a brand voice, message and elevator pitch.
  7. Make the brand visible and alive.
  8. Apply, extend, evolve your brand as you grow.

WHY BRAND

Promotes recognition and boosts awareness.

Being familiar gives you an advantage. You are most likely to be picked, your product will be preferred ahead of many competitive products.

Your brand helps set you apart from competition.

It’s critical to stand out in today’s market and successful branding gives you the that competitive edge. E.g. google has an edge over Opera and all other browsers, so much that searching on the internet has been often referred to as “googling”.

Customer loyalty

Clients are attracted to brands that they share values with. Remember, when I pointed out the issue of crafting a brand message? Yes, you need it to connect on an emotional level with clients. Clients are most likely to buy from you for the rest of their lives. They will even market your brand, Word of mouth marketing. This brings us to the fourth point which is:

A strong brand generates referrals.

Clients are now proud of your brand, they brag about using your products (like iphone users), they enjoy the promise and its unforgettable. They market your brand without even realizing it.

Motivation & direction of staff.

A clear brand strategy provides the clarity that your staff need to be successful. It tells them how to act, how to win and how to meet the organization’s goals.

Easy introduction of new products.

When you already have a strong brand and loyal customers, it’s often easier and less expensive to introduce new products or test before you further invest in them. A loyal following will help you lure customers to new products. E.g Econet easily introduces as many products and services. Ecocash, ecosure, idrive etc. We associate Econet with success, hence we quickly get connected to their products.

Branding deliverables for businesses

Every business needs a brand identity to which its customers relate and belong whenever  they seek products and services  that the industry provides

Its is true that brands must have a unique selling proposition (USP) in order to create what marketers call brand loyalty all those concepts are wrapped under the umbrella of branding which forms the first line on brand identification.

We will tackle on on the top 4 Brand deliverable that suit any  business and industry in both offline and online  communication channels

Logo

The first deliverable  any brand should have is  its logo which is the main perceived item and initial line of communication  that a company has which should convey the company image. This deliverable  includes and not limited to:

  • Logo Design
  • Logo Guidelines
  • Logo Usage & application
  • Color palette
  • Typography
  • Stationary

The second and basic deliverable of any business is the most utilized  of them all which is stationery that is present in every aspect of brand’s existence in its physical attributes through all its items that fall into this category and its distributed to the  general public business contributors . Its main purpose is to present the official brand image and spread the word of its existence this deliverable include but not limited to:

Business Cards

  • Business Forms (Invoices Receipts Letterhead etc)
  • Envelopes
  • Labels
  • Folders
  • Web/Digital Presence

The digital output list of  items is key to every company’s online presence as it reflects the virtual image of the brand on the web and such minor images of its presence on the market therefore a powerful transparent messages should be conveyed through these channels of communication this deliverable includes:

Email Signatures

  • Landing Pages / Blog
  • Newsletters
  • Social Media
  • Website
  • Mobile apps

Products Packaging

This deliverable is necessary for all businesses that sell tangible products on the marketplace and need branded packaging to convey the brand identity to the customers and the general public. This deliverable includes and is not limited to:

  • Boxes
  • Stickers
  • Bags
  • Merchandising
  • Product Application

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