Branding is perhaps the most misunderstood area of business! Let us demystify and simplify branding for you!
Here are the 6 myths that might be holding you back from creating a human centred brand that has a lasting impact.
It's All About The Visuals...
Your brand is everything about your business and how it operates. From meeting a client for a coffee to how your logo looks.
Everything you do in business reflects on your brand: how you respond (or don’t respond) to customers, who you affiliate yourself with, how you dress, how much private information you disclose on social media... Every single thing you and your employees do or say can make a positive or a negative impression on your audience.
Don't make the mistake of muddling up "Visual Brand Identity" & "Branding". Branding is much wider term.
This particular myth can create a hurdle for small business owners who aren't up to scratch on their design skills, and aren’t ready to pay up for a professional. If graphic design is not your strong point, use your strengths to your advantage. If you’re a great writer, make your brand all about writing. You don’t have to put an image in every single Facebook post. You don’t have to use Instagram. Work with what you have, and you’ll fill in the gaps later when you can afford it.
On the flip side, Canva is an awesome and easy tool for anyone who wants to create awesome graphics for their business!
You Need To Censor Yourself...
Everyone is talking about having a "personal brand" and most people assume this means only showing a polished version of themselves. Projecting the idealised version of themselves while hiding their real human personality. While this might be true for some brands, it doesn't have to be for yours!
People buy from people!! So showing vulnerability through your brand is a great way to create real relationships. Sharing the fact you have a geeky hobby or that you struggle with mental health will help you appeal to your target audience and become more approachable.
It's All About The First Impression...
While first impressions do matter, it's not all you should be focusing on.
Don't make the mistake of pouring all your resources into marketing while forgetting about the importance of customer service and retention! Focus on the full customer journey.
Where are the cracks in the system that potential clients fall through?
Where am I dropping the ball?
How can I make the customer experience even better?
Your brand touch-points go way beyond the first impression. Each interaction with your customers adds to the opinion they form about your brand. Examine each touch-point to make sure that the journey continues on the high note you've established from the start.
You Should Cater To Your Clients Personal Taste...
Contrary to popular belief, branding is not about pandering to your clients’ taste—it’s about setting their expectations about you and making promises you can keep. People will resonate with your brand because they get the impression that the person behind it is the real deal, not because it features their favourite colour.
Taking your ideal clients into account when designing your brand is important, but this goes way beyond the surface decisions of “colours they like". You need visuals and a brand voice that are in sync with your brand's essence.
It Should Be Left To The Professionals...
I know many people would love to just hand over all their worries to a professional and never think about it again, but branding is a very personal process that you can’t phone in.
A brand strategist needs to understand your business, your values, your goals and your clients. Because ultimately your brand is YOU and your vision! You will have to continue the work to keep your brand alive even after you've had a proffesional do the work.
For this reason, branding is usually a very intense process that requires you to be present and responsive. That’s the only way you can develop a brand that fits you, instead of the other way around.
Even though you might pay someone else to help you out, this is still your brand. The strategy they come up with needs to feel right to you, like they’ve given you the perfect words you were struggling to find. If you don’t feel like this person has seen and understood correctly what your business is about, then this is not the right strategy for you, and implementing it won’t inspire you. It might feel as if you’re wearing shoes that are too tight, or a pair of pants that are sliding off your hips all the time. That’s no good—your brand strategy should fit you perfectly, like it’s tailor made just for you—because it is.
Whether you decide to DIY your brand strategy, or hire a strategist, the final responsibility on what you want to communicate to your audience lies with you.
Once You Create Your Brand, You're Stuck With It Forever...
While chopping and changing your brand is definitely not recomended. This doesn't mean you should stick with branding that doesn't feel right!
It takes time for people to notice and develop trust in you. Consistency over this period of time helps you with setting expectations for that moment when the client is ready to start working with you.
But! There's no point sticking with a brand that doesn't feel right to you. Here are some signs that your branding isn't working for you.
You keep attracting the 'wrong' clients.
Your offers have developed significantly since you started.
You've switched your focus.
You've changed your pricing strategy and your branding doesn't suit your new prices.
You're embarrassed by your website or marketing materials.
If any of these points speak to you.. it might be time for a rebrand.
It’s normal for a brand to evolve with time. Companies decide to rebrand for many reasons, usually because they want to attract a new audience, or shake off their old image they’re no longer happy with.
A rebrand can involve just light changes to an existing logo. It can also be substantial, requiring a completely new brand strategy and visuals. The complexity of your rebranding project depends on how well your current brand works with your business goals.
If you want some extra help with your branding! Take our branding course included in the Women's Society Membership!
Our Branding Course Includes -
Step by step guide to completing a brand wheel
Brand Archetype Quiz
Support in finding your tone of voice
How to create a strapline