Branding is the reason anyone will buy from you. It is much more than a well-designed website, much more than corporate colors and a custom font, and much more than an app people can download.
Every aspect of your business influences customer buying decisions, so building your brand is a complicated process.
Here’s a six-step guide to branding your company.
1. Your Target Profile
Who are you serving? How well does your target profile identify with your business? Which of that person’s needs are you filling?
People only buy when they see the perfect solution. You can only be the perfect solution to one segment of the population.
If you try to be the ideal solution for everyone, your product will have too many compromises to be perfect for anyone.
Narrow down your target market. If you are selling a new, premium vodka brand, you should avoid targeting everyone between 21 and 90; rather your marketing should target professional women between 50 and 60, or golf-playing men between 30 and 50.
2. Corporate Identity
Your corporate identity revolves around your target profile, so place marketing posters all around your offices to remind every one of the customers you serve and the reason you exist.
Talk to people who align with your target profile to ensure you are on track to serve them well. Your message must resonate with your target profile.
Do your services or products clearly fill an urgent need? Is your value proposition central to your company ethos? Does every employee know what it is?
Wages are only part of the deal for employees, equally important for many are the workplace atmosphere and other company benefits.
Your staff can be your greatest brand ambassadors, and they are an important part of your branding. Make every team member in your business feel important because they are. A car engine will grind to a halt if a rubber hose leaks or a sensor fails. Your company will similarly fail if one receptionist, freelancer or cleaner doesn’t feel their job is important enough to give it their all.
Only take on people who are on board with your company ethos and get rid of anyone who is a negative influence before they cause too much damage.
3. Corporate Colors
Your business exists to serve, so the only colors you should consider are those that have the desired emotional resonances with your target market. Decide on your corporate colors using the perceptions and preferences of your target profile.
When you have decided on your corporate colors, you then need to consider your logo.
You can pay $1,000 for a logo, but initially, most businesses will use an online logo maker.
There are three types of logo, word-based, icon based and combination. A young company should use a combination type logo that includes the business name as well as a symbol that can come to represent your business over time.
5. Website Design
Now you have decided on your company colors and logo; you can start thinking about your site design and how you can stand out in a crowded marketplace. Neil Patel’s starting a Blog one-page guide is a useful starting point for any business building a website.
- Buy a .com domain
A .com domain gives you more credibility and appeals to an international audience. Buy web hosting
Sure, you can get free hosting, but you get what you pay for, and good web hosting can make or break your business.
- Install WordPress
WordPress is a free website builder that allows you to choose from thousands of designs and is very simple to customize
- Install a premium theme
Free themes are not supported and are often poorly coded. Your website design and the way it works are integral to your branding, so you need them to work well. Start your research with this Design Canyon guide to choosing a theme.
- Personalize your site design
Many WP themes have color, font, and layout customization options, or you can use a free WP plugin to turn your theme into a design that aligns perfectly with your customers’ needs.
Customify is one WordPress plugin that gives you most of the customization options you need.
If you want your customers to talk to you via your website, you need to make it drop-dead simple. The best way to achieve the simplicity you need is to use forms. Forms on WordPress are tricky, but you can fix this with another plugin, WPForms.
Form building needs to be quick, or you won’t bother. WPForms has a drag-and-drop interface and lets you accept payments in your forms (handy for membership sites.) It also allows you to use your brand colors and fonts.
6. Social Media Presence
Social media can become the tail that wags the dog unless you take control from the beginning. If you are posting on Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Instagram and Pinterest, you will find it impossible to keep up with the interactions you generate without having a screen permanently open to each channel.
You need a complete social media dashboard where you can see what is happening in all your social accounts. Think time saving, bird eyes view look on your entire social media activity under one roof.
The Short Version
You are your brand, so you must be methodical in building each component of that brand.
Identify your target customer and build your company around that person’s needs. Choose your corporate colors, fonts, and logo according to your target profile’s preferences, then ensure everyone on your payroll is on board with your mission to serve your market.