The rapid development of online technologies and innovations produced a revolution in the field of small businesses. Manufacturers, freelancers, entrepreneurs, retailers, professional creatives of all kinds now can experience an unprecedented freedom as small biz owners. They can create a website and build an online presence, find niche markets to grow into and discover new opportunities for monetization.
But can they establish themselves as “brands,” like big companies have been doing for decades?
01. Find your brand identity
To build a brand name successfully you first need to know it inside out. You start by defining the core values and qualities of your brand and let them guide every step in the brand development strategy that we will discuss throughout the article. Consider the following elements that make up your brand identity:
Who is your target audience? What is the story of your brand? What is your brand’s personality?
02. Define your brand’s look
Once you have a solid grip on your brand identity, you can move on to the more practical and technical aspects of branding your business. First in line is the question of your brand’s look – the visual expression of your brand’s story and personality.
Let’s break it down to the details:
Defining the overall style Choosing your brand’s colors Creating a winning logo Finding the right fonts
03. Set your brand’s tone
Your target audience does not only see your brand. They interact with it textually and verbally as well. The look and feel are crucial in conveying your brand identity, but it’s the brand’s tone that actively determines how people engage with it. Here’s how it works:
Crafting the ultimate brand name Building your brand vocabulary Engaging with your audience
Stay consistent: Branding is all about coherence. You can’t use multiple logos, and you don’t want to confuse your audience with a chorus of different voices and personalities. It’s good to adapt yourself to different platforms (people talk differently on Facebook and on Twitter, and you want your brand to fit in the discussion naturally), but do so in a way that corresponds and compliments, not contradicts, your general branding strategy.
Remember the big picture: Building a brand is a mean to an end. It’s not the reason you decided to start your business or establish an organization. Stay focused on your ultimate goals and make sure that your branding efforts help you achieve them.