I am excited that June is here! Did you know June is branding and design month? Although this June feels much different than any other, especially with the coronavirus, quarantine, and nationwide protests. These uncertainties may evoke a feeling your small business brands are slipping away, which is why we are talking about the importance of branding and design.
Effective branding is more important now than ever before. Branding matters: you know it does, but there is a difference between knowing and doing.
Are you actively branding your business?
Branding is more than marketing or communicating with your audience. Let us talk about empathy marketing happening right now.
We care about you.
We miss you.
We are here to help.
Are you doing this kind of marketing? Does it align with your brand, or are you doing it simply because you are afraid to miss out on the moment? If these messages do not align your everyday business, then it might feel out of sorts to take part in them.
I am not saying these notions are wrong. It is essential to support your audience, especially in times of need. But, does it relate to your audience?
What I am saying is no matter what, you must be genuine to your brand. People do not want brands to go silent, but they also do not want to hear from them merely to hear from them. Instead, they want them to act in a way that relates to their emotions.
Let me explain.
Create value in everything you do or support those that do create value. In other words, create a space that engages customers and supports their pain, joy, freedom, and culture. Understand how your brand is a service to people and show up authentically for them.
Know Your Personality
Your business personality is a representation of how you perceive, interpret, assess, evaluate, and respond to opportunities and threats. There are five brand personalities. These include excitement, sincerity, ruggedness, competence, and sophistication. Consumers are more likely to purchase products from a brand personality that is like their own.
Personality Versus Imagery
Branding and design (imagery) go together, but they are not the same thing. Branding is the process of giving meaning to specific organizations, companies, products, or services, whereas design is a part of shaping the organization's brand.
Your imagery and designs are different from your personality, but they should match your message. Both help you along in branding your business.
Are you confused yet? An effective brand strategy gives you an edge over the competition, allowing you to differentiate yourself. For example, consider two coffee shops selling fair-trade coffee. They are in the same area, both are easily accessible, with top-notch customer service.
So, how do you choose?
The choice you make for which coffee shop to support will almost always come down to their brand.
Let us examine Starbucks vs. Dunkin'. Starbucks appeals to a white-collar customer, doting its more luxurious coffee names and fancy add-ons. Dunkin', however, appeals to the average working American. Their slogan, at one point, said, "America runs on Dunkin." The coffee is likely a similar quality and relatively the same price point, but their brands are drastically different.
Elements of Good Design
There is nothing more empowering than a design that feels good without trying too hard. It can sometimes feel like a magic trick or a mythical occurrence.
I have a knack for spatial design. I can visualize how things fit into spaces without effort. Which also applies to graphic design. Have you ever heard of negative space? Negative space is one of the most used terms and often misunderstood.
Elements of good design include color, shapes, texture, typography (font), scale (size), and contrast. A good design incorporates all or most of these things. What design concepts do you have in your branding?
It is essential to decide what you want to say with your design since it is often the first touchpoint a prospective customer has with your brand. Your design makes the first impression. Do you know what your brand is saying to your customers?
Mastering design takes much practice. As does marketing. These things are as much art as they are science in the way you must experiment until you find the perfect combination.
Are you struggling to understand how to implement marketing and branding in your business? Contact us today. We can help!