Your brand is what the world sees of your business, and shows them who you are. It can easily make or break a business, so you need to brand yourself well, so you are memorable, and people keep coming back to use your services or purchase your products. It’s easy to create your brand, and here are some tips showing you how and why.
- Create a Consistent Image
People grow used to certain colours and products representing certain brands. By using colours that represent what you do and sticking with them, your branding will look more professional and put together, rather than a mismatch of things. By then using this same technique on your social media platforms or even flyers, people will grow used to your colour palettes and will be able to distinguish you from your competitors. Colours can make people feel certain things and think of particular companies when they see different colours. Here is a short list of colours and how they make people feel so you can clearly choose something that suits your business and customers:
Red is quite a punchy colour, and when used in branding, can straight away suggest to possible customers who and what you are. It can show fire and danger, youth and boldness, as well as love and passion, and because of this mix, brands may avoid it. But this means that if you do choose it, you will stand out against those who don’t. A brand to look at as an example is Coca Cola. With it’s iconic red logo, you know as soon as you see the drinks bottles on the shelf what’s what. The company has been established for many years, and because of it’s famous colour, it has left a lasting imprint on consumers.
Yellow has always been the colour that shows happiness. It communicates joy and a cheery message to those who see it, and can suggest warmth and friendliness to potential customers. However, if you do choose to use this colour, make sure to pick the right shade as some can look cheap, or even link your business to cautionary areas and hazardous items. An example to look at for this colour is McDonald’s. With it’s classic golden arches known all over the world, the colour yellow is a staple for this business without going too over the top.
Commonly, the colour green suggests nature and money. The two themes are very different, but it just shows how versatile this particular colour is. It’s organic and peaceful, yet by choosing a darker shade, your business can seem more professional and stable. If we look at the branding for Starbucks, the green logo on it’s stores and packaging tells us a story of it’s coffee and gives us a feel for the nature behind it’s famous recipes. The colour also calms us, and lets customers know they can relax and enjoy the products available.
Blue is the colour chosen by many companies to represent their business. Because of this, customers know it’s reliable and trustworthy. It can show corporate, calming, and sadness just through the shade you choose. Be careful which you choose and how much you use of it, as too much can be overpowering and difficult to look at. An example to look at is the NHS. Known to everyone throughout the UK, the NHS has a classic and clean blue logo, that shows us straight away that they are professional, and the colour blue links to health and reliability. It’s a simple logo, but very effective.
Traditionally, the colour purple is associated with royalty and majesty. Again with the shades, darker shades suggest luxury but can be quite heavy, whereas paler shades can feel quite light and airy to potential customers. Purple isn’t a very common choice when branding, but is a very professional colour to go with. A big brand that is famous for using the colour purple is Cadbury. From it’s packaging to website design, Cadbury chocolate feels luxurious with the dark purple colour, as well as nostalgic as it hasn’t changed much over the years.
When thinking about branding your business, you may not think to go with black or white, but they are very popular choices with some big businesses. For this, we are going to look at the colour white. White classically suggests simple, clean lines, and modern designs. White can be quite plain, but introducing other colours could suggest other emotions, so make sure your business suits the minimalist style. An example for this colour would be the brand Apple, one of the biggest businesses in the world. With it’s clean, crisp advertisements and simple fonts, you know exactly who they are, and what they offer without all the fuss.
As you can see, choosing a colour is important when branding, but take your time in choosing when weighing up your options. Colour is a major way to brand your business so choose carefully.
- Don’t Confuse People
Branding can quickly become complicated if you let it. Keeping it simple is the best way to go, as it can easily become confusing for customers to understand who you are and what you provide. This can lead to low sales as people don’t know what you actually do. Try and use your chosen colours on all your products and sites as this keeps your message clear to clients.
Another way to stay consistent is with the usernames you choose for your company’s social media profiles. People find it easier to find and follow you if you have the same usernames for each platform, keep that in mind when creating your profiles. If you need to create a logo, but are unsure of who to ask to create it or you feel you aren’t skilled enough, use just text. It keeps everything simple, and stays on brand.
- Establish Ways to Remain in Contact with Customers
After you have a customer base, you want to keep them using your business. It can be hard work building up a good customer base, and often take years to do so don’t throw this away. If people feel they have been forgotten, they may look for another company to provide them with what you do. This may then lead to bad reviews, and no new customers. Simple ways to build and keep relationships with customers is to create a monthly newsletter to send to them, or call them to ask for their feedback on their latest purchase from you. This allows you to gain feedback on your branding, as well as keep upto date with what your customers want to see from you. Brands build a customer base, and a customer base helps build your brand. Don’t forget about them or they will forget about you.
- Create a Strong Image by Staying Honest
It can sometimes seem easy to tell white lies to try and sell more. But your customers will pick up on this. The best thing to do is always be upfront and honest, which will attract more customers to your business. A brand is weakened when customer relationships are broken, so try and stay honest always. People then know they can trust your business, which means that they are more likely to come back to you.
You can’t build a winning company on bullshit, so work out what is successful and what gets customers interested and stick with it. This will take time, but will be so worth it!
As everything is online now, businesses tend to post as much as they can on sites where the world can see. However, shit sticks, and if you make a mistake it’s on the internet forever. It can take years to build up a professional and clear brand, as well as a large, reliable customer base. Making a mistake online for the world to see isn’t ever meant, but can affect what you’ve spent time building up. What you post sticks with people, and they don’t forgive likely, but everyone makes mistakes so try truthful, and if necessary, own up and apologise.
- Continue Evolving
As your business grows, it’s important to keep your brand up to date too. This doesn’t mean constantly updating your logo or colours, it means staying up to date on social media and making your business relevant in every situation. How will you approach people during the summer? Christmas is a tough time of year, but how will you persuade people to part with their money to use your services? Use your branding to build up new customer relations through advertising campaigns or even new products. Keeping your work and output fresh allows you to keep up to date with current affairs as well as reach new customers.
Continue this by using new technologies to further your business. This means keeping up to date with new releases and online updates. Make sure your website is optimized, and follows your branding structure. Should you invest in an app? Everything is online and mobile these days, so stay ahead and on top if you can.
Remember to continue what you’re doing with your customers to keep them coming back again and again. Like we’ve said, customer bases don’t build up over night. Work hard at keeping yours.
Once you have your general branding done, this can be left alone for a while as changing it could cause harm to your business, however everything else you have done to expand your brand can’t. Keep on top of social media profiles by updating them everyday, keep engaging with customers and possible ones, and never stop growing your business. It will be tough, but you will thank yourself in a few years.
Hopefully through these tips, you’re able to see where your brand can be improved so that your overall business is too. It’s so important to get your branding right, so work on it, and don’t settle if you’re not happy with it.