Have you given as much thought about your brand as you have about your business lately? Or, maybe you’ve been sooooo busy with client projects and workload in general that you haven’t been able to give much thought to either. (I’m not raising my guilty hand over here btw…)
Guilty or not, you should be giving more thought to both.
Building your brand and keeping it consistent is the key to creating not only an experience for your clients but when you have a full and cohesive brand AND business combo, well now my friend, now you have a Stellar Brand Experience.
Whether you’re just getting started, coming up on your third year plus in business, are an employee for an organization, have a product or a service, etc., having a cohesive brand will not only set you apart from the competition but will help you to identify your target audience, make more money, feel more fulfilled in life and in business, and the list goes on.
What is Branding?
Let’s start with what branding is. Branding is the perception that your business has on this world and is a key reason why someone would choose to do business with you.
Branding is a first impression, the stage setter and the opening act to your grand symphony. Branding my friend, is a direct reflection of you. Who you are, what you stand for. It represents your passion and helps to tell the story of your WHY. It’s the experience that one can expect to have with you when they interact with you, when they engage with you, when they work with you and how they refer you. Branding my friend, is more than just a logo, it’s an experience.
[Tweet “Branding, is more than just a logo, branding is an experience. “]
Creating a Stellar Brand Experience
Let me ask you, what kind of experience do you want to create for yourself and your clients?
Let me tell you a short story….
You’re on the hunt for let’s say, a therapist. You head over to Facebook and put a feeler out there asking people for a recommendation because let’s face it, we prefer to do business with those that we know, like and trust, right? Your friends deliver and you’re immediately given 2-3 people to check out.
What do you do next? You head on over and you Google them of course!
You come across the first guy and while he comes from a trusted source, your FB friend, you are not impressed by what you see on his site. It’s outdated, there’s little information and you can’t really get a feel for what it’s like to work with him other than your friends word so…you move on to the next suggestion.
The next site pops up and WOAH, you are immediately overwhelmed with colors, and flashy things and music playing and….omg you can’t close it fast enough. Whew, that was sensory overload. Again, you move on.
The third person you Google and click on the link with hesitant anticipation because of what you just experienced so you wait, with one eye open. This time, you are pleasantly surprised!
Beautiful site, gorgeous images, clear and easy to read verbiage, very professional in presentation and overall – a GREAT first impression! You are intrigued and find yourself wanting to/needing to know more. Next thing you know, you’re filling out the contact form or calling the number to schedule an appointment.
So, which experinence would you rather have for your prospective clients?
How To Create a Stellar Brand Experience
So how do you creating a stellar brand experience? One that not only wows your audience at first impression but impresses them at every stage throughout your process?
Creating a stellar brand has two main parts;
- your brand (print and digital)
- your business (communication plan and consistency)
What’s included in each section you ask? I’ve created this handy checklist for reference.
Before you dig in, ask yourself these questions.
- When you think of people who talk about your brand, what do they say about it?
- How do you want your brand to make people feel?
- Who is your audience? (Give this question some serious thought. Who you wanted your audience to be when you first launched your business may not be the same audience you would want today or even 3-5 years from now).
- What do you do and why do you do it? (put some thought into it).
- What makes you different from other people and businesses that are doing the same thing as you?
Take an inventory of what you have and use the checklist as your guide to determine what do you have, what needs to be updated, what do you need that is missing, etc.
Now decide: What do you like about your current brand and why do you like it? How does it make you feel and how do you think it makes your audience feel? If it feels like it fits in with the answers you’ve chosen, keep it!
Think back to that story that I told you and use that as inspiration as you make your way through the checklist.
Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed.
[Tweet “Start where you are, use what you have and slowly add things as you can and as you grow”]
In the weeks to come I will have more guides and resources for you to use to create some of these piece for your brand and how to put them into action.
Let me know how you like the checklist and tell me ONE thing that you are going to work on to create your own stellar brand!