To be a strong competitor in today’s market it really does pay to know your brand inside out. Constructing your brand DNA will help you achieve consistency in all areas of your business.
What is the identity of your brand?
When starting out in business, getting to know your brand can be an easy task as your team is smaller and each individual knows the inner workings of the company. If you’re setting up house on your own this will be even easier, as ‘what you say goes’ as far as branding is concerned. In this digital age, however, growth is key to a company’s success, and this means that sometimes your branding will slip, as new faces join the team with different visions.
Perhaps surprisingly, a huge nine out of ten startups fail. While that may seem like a disheartening percentage, it should be the driving force behind your ambition to succeed and become a success against those tough odds. What is it that 90% of startups are missing? Their brand identity isn’t strong enough.
Ensuring you have a solid brand DNA will help you to stay true to the essence of your business. Ask yourself these questions to determine whether or not you know your brand DNA:
Does your business have a succinct voice?
Your brand should have presence across a range of media in this digital age. Each platform – both internal and external – should have the same voice. This will affect how you pick out the perfect Twitter hashtags for engagement, and how your ‘About Us’ section of your website comes across to site visitors. Consistency is key in your tone of voice, so spend some time creating a document which will be distributed to all members of staff who work on product, marketing and sales: every member of your team should be a voice for your company, and it’s important that it’s the best voice possible.
Do you know your customer?
Your brand may sell the exact same product or service as countless other businesses around the world, so to compete for market share you really need to know who your target market is. Take a look at your current customer base: who are they? Where do they live? What are their interests? A simple questionnaire could help you build a profile of your customers, allowing you to target your brand towards their needs. Note: your brand tone of voice may also need updating to engage with your specific audience.
What’s your story?
Each individual business venture around the world is built on the back of a story. What’s yours? Tell your story on your website, and be sure to make it an integral part of your brand’s identity; your customers will identify with the business’s struggles as human qualities, and engagement is key in business. Richard Branson, for example, is entirely open about all the business mistakes he and Virgin have made over the years, so his customers admire his entrepreneurial tenacity and ‘never give up’ attitude. For a man worth 4.8 billion dollars, he’s worth learning from.
At the heart of your brand are your employees. A strong brand DNA stems from within, and should your team become disengaged you’ll see the results in your revenue. So make a brand promise, and be sure to show your team just how appreciative you are for all their hard work. A strong team creates a winning brand!
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