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Before we dive in and look at the 7 brand basics needed to create a strong brand, let’s go back to the beginning to discover what a brand means and what it can build.
Think of branding as the ‘DNA’ of a company. It carries valuable information to conjure a set of emotions and beliefs consumers relate to a business. If done properly, it’ll also help distinguish you from your competitors and prevent you from getting lost in the murky middle.
There’s a common misconception that branding is either marketing, a company name or just a logo, but it goes far deeper than that! Branding has many components, some of which we’ll look at in more detail in a later session, but at its core, it involves a deep understanding of people’s minds and behaviours, and finding ways to relate to them and vice versa.
By understanding the human need of consumers, your brand can build real connections with your customers, which builds a sense of a belonging through community. Your brand becomes a solution to their pain points, which is where the real value is experienced and where you can create a sense of comfort, trust, and loyalty with your customers.
As a result, a strong brand is also a promise between you and your customer, which will consciously and unconsciously aims to boost your customers’ happiness, motivation and well-being; with the ultimate aim of improving their lives in some way. Going above and beyond will also set your brand apart from your competitors.
Now that we have defined what branding is, let's go through the 7 brand basics that make up a strong brand.
These rules can apply to any brand from a startup to an established corporation. In either case, it is never too late to boost your brand if you’ve missed one out. What’s important is that your company is taking the initiative to enhance and create value for your customer beyond your core market. We recommend doing this exercise with your team to help cement the vision and culture of your company amongst your team, with an experienced agency or both.
1. Brand name: Choosing your perfect brand name is extremely important, as it will instantly form a perception or a story about you. The rule of thumb is to pick a name that is creative, short (3 words max), represents your company, is memorable and easy to spell.
2. Brand mission & elevator pitch: This is a paragraph / sentence that outlines and captures the value your brand wants to create for your customers and it should remain. Another way to think of it is - what kind of legacy do you want to leave behind?
3. Brand slogan: A short 3-5 word catchy phrase that accompanies the mission statement and works alongside your brand name to complete the perception you want your customers to have of your business, allowing you to be a little more descriptive.
4. Brand vision: This focuses on where your company sees itself in the future and how it will grow to get there. This will be your business roadmap for the journey ahead.
5. Brand logo: Your logo should be a symbolic design that visually represents your brand. A bespoke logo will create instant brand recognition, or if refreshing your brand, can evolve your existing brand to make sure that you remain relevant.
6. Brand color & collateral: Choosing the right colors and building your library of graphic assets is vital as it can increase the visibility of your brand (think Coca Cola!). The colours set the stage of the brand’s persona and it can arouse particular moods or feelings for your brand thanks to subliminal psychology of colour.
7.Brand’s tone of voice: A brand voice (also called ToV / tonality) is how your brand expresses and communicates its personality through your choice of words. Try to keep your brand’s tonality consistent and aligned with your brand mission.