The moment you decide to start up a business, you need to think brand. It’s the key to every successful company – no matter how big or small. It makes you stand out from your competitors; it adds value to your offer and it connects you with your customers. It’s a cornerstone of your business.
If you don’t invest a little time and money to get your brand right at the start, it will cost you a lot of money further down the line – even your livelihood and your reputation could be at stake!
If you understand your brand, your image will be clear and consistent – and it will have a personality. Your customers will have a bond with you, they will know what to expect from you and they will trust you. They will stay loyal and recommend you. People will want to work for you and with you.
So as a start-up business, that’s why it’s important to think about your brand from day one – it should be part of your initial business plan – and it should stay on your business agenda.
Think of your company as a person. What’s its DNA? What does it look like, what does it sound like? And, what does it feel like? Now think about your favourite brand and ask the same questions. You know exactly what you’re buying into, don’t you?
And when you’ve established your business, your brand should always be under review because your business changes. You launch new services and products – you start to compete in different markets. Rivals try to poach your customers and often copy you which is flattering but also threatening.
Great brands evolve because we live in an ever-changing world and customers are savvier these days. They trust recommendations by friends and family. They’re not afraid to complain or compliment. The power of social media can make or break your business so you have to protect your brand by keeping it strong and relevant.