We’ve all seen examples of businesses that have polished, professional looks that are truly memorable. Their website, promotional materials, packaging or physical locations all have a unified message and design that creates an image of who they are and makes them instantly recognizable. This is all a result of carefully planned and well executed BRANDING. What exactly is branding? Entrepreneur magazine defines branding as “the marketing practice of creating a name, symbol or design that identifies and differentiates a product from other products“.
Large corporations invest millions of dollars working with ad agencies to develop and market successful brands for their businesses. Tactics like extensive market research or using the perfect celebrity endorsements are not uncommon. Of course not all businesses can afford or, quite frankly, require this level of investment. Great branding doesn’t need to be overly complicated but it does require some important thought and planning. Here is a breakdown of the major steps involved in creating a great brand:
1- Asking the right questions:
- What is the company’s mission?
- Who is their ideal client?
- What are the unique benefits and features of their products or services?
- What values do they want to be associated with?
2- Establishing a look and feel for the business. This could include:
- A logo design
- Development of a unique colour palette
- Writing a company tagline
- Creating a set of design and branding guidelines to follow
- Creating a “voice” or “unique selling proposition” for the company
3- Continuously and consistently applying these brand elements in all of the company’s marketing materials and customer interactions.
Making a business look like a million bucks is all about developing a strong foundation and creating branding building blocks that will aid in a company’s growth. Large business or small, the same basic rules apply.