A Brand is a name, term, sign, symbol or design, or combination of them which is intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group sellers and to differentiatePhilip Kotler (1991) The Principles of Marketing
What does branding mean?
Many people think the foundation of your brand is your logo. Although this is a core component for your website, packaging and promotional materials; all of which should integrate your logo to communicate your brand, this is not everything. Your branding is your DNA, your soul, the core of your business.
What is a brand strategy?
Defining your brand is like a journey of business self discovery. It can be difficult, time consuming and uncomfortable but it needs to be done. It requires, at the very least, that you answer these business questions to get you started:
- What is your company’s mission?
- Is your company a product or service?
- What makes your company different to your competitors?
- Who is your company’s target audience?
Some people will only purchase a particular brand even though there are acceptable alternatives on the market, we call this Brand loyalty. These customers are also your best source of free marketing as they are a referral base for you without you have to do anything. Each year a list of the most valuable brands is updated, the big players seem to remain pretty much the same, and it should be no surprise to you based on consumer behaviour who they are.
What is included in brand guidelines?
To get you started with basic branding we would need to develop the following for your brand which then become the make up of your brand guidelines. The purpose of brand guidelines is to set the tone of everything to do with how your brand physical looks and is represented. Once you have these set, then it is to produce collateral or do partnerships with other brands as you already have it established.
- Colour palette
- Tone of voice
- Mood board
- Style guide
- Example collateral
So what is personal branding?
Pretty much as it says on the tin. This relates to a person instead of a company. Many startups choose to utilise their founder/ CEO’s personal brand to build the awareness and reputation as the company starts out. If you don’t have an “influential” person or industry expert when it is as much energy as “corporate branding”. Great examples (whether you like them or not) of people which kudos personal branding are: Richard Branson, Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, Michelle Obama – the likes of these people, we follow THEM regardless of the company they or creation they are doing.
Branding SWAG in action
You can get really creative with your branded collateral/ SWAG, it doesn’t need to be as simple as a leaflet, pul up banner or business card – this is a Sample of some of the branded items I use:
If you have your marketing and branding already set and you are just looking for inspiration and an easy way to produce collateral/ SWAG, I’ve teamed up with a drop shipping company to do this directly. This means we cut the costs of having to pay for third party agents to design our own collateral and we don’t have to buy minimum orders of 100!