How to craft your company’s branding
A 3-step guide to craft your company’s branding
by Adwright, 21 Decemeber2021
In the words of Jeff Bezos, founder of e-commerce juggernaut Amazon, “Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.” Branding is all about perception, an outsider view of what the company is like inside. When utilised properly, branding can be a tool to elevate brands, but if mismanaged, it can easily destroy impressions and confuse customers.
Branding is a complex term but a simple concept. Think of it like the clothes we wear. Well-selected apparel can accentuate one’s figure and look. A company with excellent branding is better-positioned to bring its message across and leave a more powerful, lasting impression on its consumers.
How should a company craft its branding?
1. Understand your brand identity
When we pick clothes, we instinctively know that certain clothes will not fit without trying them on. It could be that the shirt is too tight or that the jeans are a few sizes too big. This is because we know our rough measurements according to the range of clothes we fit already. Similarly, a brand needs to understand its identity—its mission, vision, core values—before it can reach the next stage of deciding how to position itself to the public.
Some of the barriers that impeded brand and culture alignment identified through a brand audit:
To put it simply, mission refers to what the brand sets out to achieve through their products or service. As the driving force behind the brand, the mission statement should outline its core purpose. This requires understanding of the “why” aspect in the business.
Oftentimes, people fall into the belief that revenue is the purpose of their business, forgetting that “profit isn’t a purpose, it’s a result.” Sales and healthy financials are indeed important but surely that goes without being said for every other for-profit business in this world? If mission statements were written in this train of thought, it would not go far in inspiring employees or connecting with consumers.
Vision, on the other hand is the brand’s projection of their ambitions. It is forward-looking and often lofty in nature. Think of them like aspirations for the brand.
Brand values are essentially guiding principles that shape the business. It is representative of what the brand stands for and is embodied in the day-to-day work of employees. LEGO is one company which does its brand values excellently. Imagination, creativity, fun and learning are not just work ethics their employees live by but also values they hope children will take away while playing with LEGO. Do you see the duality of their band values? While crafting brand values, it is important to stay authentic and not simply copy the brand values of other big companies. Values which speak from the heart will be more relatable to the audience and have a higher chance of resonating with them.
Understanding your brand mission, vision and values culminates in a stronger brand identity, which makes the subsequent step of branding much more manageable.
2. Devise your brand positioning
Brand positioning comes into the picture after the brand identity is set. It is the strategic process of scoping the brand’s target audience with due consideration of what the brand offers in relation to its competitors.
This is where stopping at knowing ourselves well i.e. brand identity is not good enough. We need to keep abreast of trends and happenings around us, whether in the external world or within the industry. STEEP analysis is a strategic tool to map and assess the dependencies of different factors and their consequences within a company or system. STEEP stands for Sociological, Technological, Economical, Environmental and Political. These five factors come together to provide clarity and direction to a company’s brand positioning strategy.
No two brands are the same. No matter how closely associated or similar two brands are with one another, there should be something unique about one brand which the other does not offer. Thus, it is important to leverage on the Unique Selling Point (USP) of your brand when thinking of how to position it.
3. Visualise your brand outside
With a strong understanding of your brand identity and brand positioning, the next action mode would be to build its brand assets. This is where brand naming, logo and brand voice come into play.
Brand Name and Logo
The brand name and logo are arguably the most important facets of the brand assets. While they might not be the same at times—think Apple and its logo versus Google and its logo–they both serve the same purpose. They are the face of the brand and what the public knows the brand by.
The name and logo are most likely to be the first thing the founder of a new brand would start with when introducing the brand to the world for the first time. This is why brand naming is such an important process. Good brand names are simple, short, distinctive and easy to remember. They do not need to mention the business of the brand—think Nike, Adidas, Canon, Amazon—although it is perfectly fine to do so. Snapchat, Dunkin’ Donuts and Toys“R”Us are a few of such examples. Does the name make the brand, or the brand make the name? Just a food for thought.
Lastly, brand voice is how the brand would speak if it was a person. The brand voice is the reflection and extension of the brand personality. It is consistent and unchanging. Doing so allows brands to be perceived as being reliable and understandable.
For example, Starbucks’ voice is functional and expressive, while the voice of Coca-Cola is positive, friendly and down-to-earth. Both companies are leaders in their industry, but their brand personalities are not entirely similar. If Starbucks followed Coca-Cola’s brand personality or vice versa, would both companies enjoy their current success? Most probably not.
Building a successful brand does not come about easily, which makes it all the more important to consult a branding expert to bring your business to greater heights. As an established branding agency, Adwright’s in-house methodology has propelled businesses, ranging from local SMEs to global corporations, to the next level of success. To find out more about the services that Adwright provides, call us today at +65 6227 7227 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.