Branding Questions for Small Businesses
Consistency aside, strong branding will instill a clear and powerful message across all areas of your business, including your online presence, print advertisements, and even your own company culture.
However, before you can set and reinforce both consumer and employee expectations, you must go beyond your name, slogan, and sales pitch, and get down to a much greater Why. What do you want your branding to represent? What do you and your team stand for? Why is that important?
Start by analyzing why your business even exists in the first place. What pain points do you want to solve for your customers? What does your product or service do, and why should prospective consumers care?
You want to have concise answers to these simple, yet critical questions because they will be the backbone of everything from your mission statement and corporate culture, all the way down to your social media posts and advertisements.
Spend time analyzing the online presence of your competitors. Visit their websites, social media pages, and see what customers and employees have to say about them on review sites like Google, Yelp, and Glassdoor. What do people think of their offerings? What about their customer service?
Are there any particular words that stand out or that several competitors also use? What about colors, visual elements or metaphors that appear often and or should be avoided?
When branding, positioning is all about creating meaning in the minds of your audience members. What industry will your brand be competing in? How does your brand differentiate from the rest? What areas do your competitors excel that you need to catch up in? How do you plan to counteract? Answering these questions will help you figure out how you can position your brand most effectively.
Name and Story
When picking a name for your brand, you will want something that’s aligned with your vision and positioning. Take the time to search the Canadian Trademarks Database and Domain Name Search to ensure that the competitive namespace is clear, and that you don’t pick a name that can get easily confused with other brands, has already been taken, or is selling for an astronomical price.
The story that makes up your branding should be able to concisely define what your business is and does, why it exists, and why it all matters. Afterall, it’s this story that’s going to be shared with all your customers, partners, and employees.
It’s only after you have your vision, positioning, and name and story down that you can start developing a one of a kind visual identity for your branding campaign. Beyond just the logo, the visual brand elements, such as colors, fonts, icons and photography styles used, are absolutely critical in presenting a unified and cohesive front. Consistency is key here.
Look into building a partnership with a graphic designer—ideally early on—as this professional will utilize your approved colors, logos, and fonts consistently across all branding platforms.
From the initial vision and colors that make up your logo, down to the messaging that comes to mind when employees and customers hear your name, branding starts with asking the right questions to ensure a look, feel, and message that’s clear and coherent.
Looking to freshen up your marketing material? AngelStar Digital has you covered. Give us a call today at (519) 969-0712!