When you first start a business, building a brand is possibly not on your radar. After all, brands are only for big businesses like Apple or Amazon right? Wrong!
Every business no matter it’s size needs a brand.
What is a brand anyway?
If you’re asking yourself this question, then keep reading.
Let’s talk a little bit about what exactly a brand is.
Your brand represents your identity in your market – who you are, what you do, how you are perceived. It’s essentially the connection that you make with your audience. It’s your reputation. It’s what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.
A brand is the emotions that people associate with your business. A brand is almost entirely the result of how your audience feels when they come across your business. It’s how your customers feel when they do business with you. It’s what they take away after coming across you on Instagram, reading a blog post, receiving an email, working with you 1:1 or purchasing a product. It’s the words and emotions they use to describe your business to friends, family and colleagues.
A brand isn’t just one thing. It’s made up of several components that work cohesively to form a brand. Your brand is what will help you to stand out from others in your industry. This right here is why building a brand is important.
So what goes into building brand?
The first and most important step to building a brand is to get clear on what I call your brand foundations. These are the essential elements that any business needs to understand if they want to be successful.
Your brand foundations form the basis of your business and consist of:
- Your mission – Understanding your purpose in business is important. The reason? Every decision that you make in your business should reflect your mission. If you’re asked to make a business decision and you don’t feel like it supports your mission then you know to say no.
For example, my mission is:
“To help as many coaches and service-based women in business to brand and market their business so they STAND OUT and get BOOKED OUT.”
Now, one of the services I am often asked to do in my business is logo design. I know that simply having a logo isn’t going to help you build a successful online brand. I want to support you in the entire process of building a brand so I don’t just do logo design.
Yes, I understand that some people just want a logo but I’m not the person to give it to you. There are plenty of other businesses out there that will.
Saying no to things such as logo design frees up my time and energy into supporting my mission.
- Understanding your ideal client – Forget trying to figure out what car they drive and where they buy their clothes. These things aren’t important. I mean really understanding your ideal client.
You need to know what problems your ideal clients have to enable you to create offerings that help them to solve them. You need to understand their goals, their pain points and the transformation they are looking to achieve so that your content and messaging can speak directly to them.
Which leads me onto…
- Having a clear message – Your message will enable you to communicate effectively what it is you do, who you work with and how you can help your ideal clients. Having a clear message across the board that is consistent in everything that you do will help position you as the go-to person in your industry.
These are just three elements of your brand foundations. To read more about creating your brand foundations (also known as brand strategy) check out this post on the 4 Essential Elements to Building a Solid Brand Strategy.
When you are first starting out in business, it’s sensible to have just one or two core offerings that help achieve your ideal client’s transformation.
The reason for this is that you want to keep your marketing as simple as possible in the beginning. By having one or two core offerings, you can consistently talk about these offerings across all of your marketing which will help you to get booked out. Once you’re booked out with these offerings and have been working with your clients for a while, you can start to build out a project suite that will meet your ideal clients where they are at.
For example, I started by just offering my signature 1:1 offering – The Flourish Experience. This is a done-for-you brand strategy, design and marketing coaching programme that helps you to build a flourishing online brand.
I then saw a need to help people who didn’t necessarily need to work on the visual aspect of their brand but needed support with brand and marketing strategy. This is how my 1:1 brand and marketing coaching programme came about.
After working with my clients 1:1 and to enable me to support my mission of helping a larger number of people than my 1:1 time would allow, I launched my group coaching programme – Brand, Market, Flourish.
This product suite meets my audience where they are at in their business whilst supporting my mission.
Your visual brand is important but many people only focus on this aspect without working on building a brand in its entirety.
Think of your brand like dating. When you first meet someone, you are more than likely initially attracted to them by their looks. This is your visual brand. Then you go on some dates and you start to get to know them and their personality. This is when you really start to like someone (or not). This is your brand.
Your brand identity consists of not only a logo but colours, fonts, marketing material, your website and so on. All of these elements need to reflect your brand’s personality as well as attracting your ideal clients. This is why it’s so important that your brand is consistent.
What’s the point in putting in all of the work mentioned above if you don’t actively market your business. Build it and they will come is most definitely a myth.
You need to be actively marketing your business on a daily basis to enable you to grow your audience and connect with your ideal clients.
Now marketing is a whole other post in itself so you should definitely check out my blog post 6 Marketing Strategies to Grow Your Audience Online.
I feel really lucky that I can combine my 15 years of experience in marketing with my love for branding and design to help online business owners build a brand that not only looks good but one that converts for them.
Now as you will see, there’s a lot that goes into building a brand and it’s not something that you do and leave. It’s a constantly changing organism that you are building upon as your business grows.
Don’t feel like you need to do all of this at once. By taking smaller steps that feel manageable to you, you are on your way to building a brand that helps you stand out and get booked out.
Join the Brand, Market, Flourish Group Coaching Programme Waitlist
If you’ve finished reading this post feeling like you need support in building your brand, I’d love for you to join the , Brand, Market, Flourish waitlist. Join the waitlist and be the first to hear when the next round opens plus recieve an exclusive early bird offer! There’s no commitment by getting yourself on the waitlist.
During this high-touch programme, I’ll walk you through the process of building and growing your brand from start to finish.
With Q&A group coaching calls where you have direct access to me, a private community, access to my video trainings, workbooks and resources, you’ll feel confident and excited that you too can grow a brand that STANDS OUT and gets BOOKED OUT.