3 simple questions to define your brand
It's important for people to understand who you are and what you do. Especially in marketing, it can be difficult to convey exactly what you are working on (like trying to explain SEO or UX designer).
Taking some actual time out of your day to think through your brand can help you sell it better. Whether it a side hustle, Etsy shop, services, or yourself, branding is what will get you in front of the right people. If you can't articulate your brand and what you offer, no one else will be able to understand your value and try to benefit from it.
To help build your understanding of your business' brand (even if you are your business or are building a slightly separate brand for your business), ask yourself and/or your team:
What is the simplest way to define your business?
Sometimes we get a little too complicated and need to get back to the basics like:
When you are your business: I am a _[insert profession]________ and I do _[work]____________ .
When you have a side business: My business __[insert product/service]________ and it offers ______[insert benefit]___________ . (You can reverse this too if you like starting with why)
Me? I am a marketer and I build strategic brands. My business, Florida Winter Marketing, creates strategies to make brands memorable. It helps businesses have a clear understanding of their brand and brands their customer touchpoints.
- You don't have to have a funky name to brand yourself. You don't have to be the "Business Bitch" to be memorable. While being catchy can help, being authentic and having a clear conversation about who you are and what you offer will be better.
- Don't get too complicated. You don't need to be a unique ISP designer with special ninja skills. I'm not sure that's a thing, but the simpler you can convey your message to a prospect, the better.
- Think about what your message conveys. People want to understand what you can do for them in terms of the benefits, not just the features. Knowing that your a 3D animator is great, but usually someone also wants to know how it is to work with you. Your brand should be extension of the personality of your products or services.
What makes you unique?
This can be the hard part, where people go: someone else does the exact same thing as me or has the same product. There should be a reason that someone will choose you over someone else. From the way to approach the project, work with them, or deliver, people should understand what makes you different.
This sometimes is referred to as a positioning statement, but saying you "Drive and deliver results for businesses," will not be enough to separate you from the competition in products or services.
- It can be your point of view. You are defined by your voice and what you have to say. The way to speak about what you do and how you convey this to prospects is what people will respond to.
- Be authentic. Don't be [insert adjective] just for the sake of being who you think your audeince will want to read or listen to. But also, don't be afraid to be yourself and admit you are quirky, nerdy, or totally boss.
- Try to make this a positive statement. Being a "chronic sleeper" or "Overachieving Netflix watcher" as a unique selling point may not win someone over. But by establishing your authority (like being an Olympic athlete, author, etc.) might.
How do you want your customers to describe your brand?
Not your product or your service. Your product or your service is not your brand, otherwise all creatives or retailers would be mostly the same. Your brand is the difference between Lyft and Uber. They offer the same service, right? But you will have vastly different ideas about what each one is.
Brand is made up of a lot of things, from your company to people's perceptions about you, but you can control what you convey and how. Is your brand helpful, funny, witty, upscale, modern, traditional? By knowing how you want to convey your messages, it will inform your visuals and copywriting efforts.
It's the difference between:
- Would you like to work with me? Click here.
- I would love to work with you! Click here.
- I only want to work with retailers like Amazon, click here if you are.
- Curiouser and curiouser? Click here.
- Venture to your business unknowns by clicking here.
- And so on.
Want the "Define Your Brand" worksheet? Click below!
- Brands can change over time. You are allowed to grow with your business or let your business evolve. By letting your business grow and shift, it will let you show a new side of your personality. You can keep this under your line and let it be a new offering under the same brand, or offer it as a new line.
- There's a difference between brand positioning and business model. You can change what you offer, without changing your brand. If you are a creative and want to build websites instead of just designing them, you may need to update your business model and not your brand. If you are a business offering a new service or product, the same may apply.
- What you put out there and what your customers perceive are different. There's only so much you can control with a brand, like what you say, how often and in what contexts. What you can't change is what other people hear or are looking for. By understanding your market, you can better position your brand to get your ideal audience.