Your brand is who you are, what you represent, how people identify with you, and what sets you apart from your competition. Without a brand, your company can get lost in the midst of everyone else, but with a good one, wow – your company can surely thrive, and that is why sometimes it’s best to turn to branding services for professional assistance.
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The Basics of Branding
In business, branding is huge. Simply said, your brand is your company’s face. It’s who you are, how people identify with you, and how you carry out your identity throughout the community. Sure, branding is color schemes and aesthetics, too, but a good brand says much more than that.
Entrepreneur gives us a great explanation of what branding truly is:
Simply put, your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it differentiates your offering from that of your competitors. Your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.
Defining your brand takes some self-discovery and introspection. What do you stand for? How do you want your customers to see you? The above article shares some great questions to ask yourself during this self-discovery to help you uncover your brand.
- What is your company’s mission?
- Describe some of the benefits and features of your products or services.
- What do your customers and potential customers already think of your company?
- Are there certain qualities you want to be identified with your company?
Branding has multiple components. Sure, it may begin with the logo, the colors, and the visual aspect of the brand, but it carries much further than that. Think about where and how you advertise, that’s part of your brand. If you sell a product, how do you package it? That’s part of your brand. Do you affiliate with community organizations or partner with schools? Everything about your business can fall under your brand, so make sure it all lines up. A clear brand is an effective one, but a muddled one can get confusing.
This may sound a bit overwhelming, but don’t worry. This is where branding services can come in to play and not only help you create your brand but also carry it consistently through your company.
How Can Branding Services Help?
Whatever your business may be, whether it’s a t-shirt company, a gutter cleaning service, a bakery, or a voice over business, branding is an integral piece of the whole. A branding service can connect all the pieces to create and work the perfect brand for you.
Branding has many roles. One of the main ones is your logo. But even the voice in your marketing or any audio piece is part of your branding. Branding services can not only help you define your brand, but they can assist in making sure it’s clear and cohesive throughout your whole business. Here are just some of the things a branding company can do:
- Building a brand identity from the ground up.
- Rebranding established businesses.
- Establishing brand positioning and messaging.
- Creating a branding strategy.
- Designing company logos.
- Formulating brand guidelines for design, style, and tone.
- Mapping out a social media strategy that aligns with the company’s brand identity.
- Writing copy for websites and other digital assets that accurately reflect the brand voice.
If you notice you’re not getting the traffic or customers you want, you may have a brand barrier. This means that your brand is not getting the point across of your business, or maybe its voice isn’t consistent all the way through your business. It has to touch on everything, from social media to logos to your website. Even packaging and your tone reflect your brand. And then it has to reach your target audience.
Maybe you are just having trouble identifying your brand and getting started. Branding services can help from here. They can help you identify your mission and your voice. Because these parts aren’t always as clear as say, a logo, they are often harder to pinpoint. But a service can help you get there, and once you’ve gotten started with your brand, it all can come together easier.
Small Business Branding Services
Professional services branding and advertising can be a big help to small businesses. Often small business owners have so much to focus on to get their business running that branding is overlooked. Everything from the name of your business to your logo matters along with a concise tagline, a consistent voice, and a commitment to your target audience.
Your name is crucial. Choosing a strong name for your small business is one of the most important things you can do. Professional services branding help can assist in choosing a great name that will personify your brand. Again, think about your business, your mission, your identity. Choose a name that personifies all of this, plus it is clear on what you do.
This article on Crowdspring.com shares great tips on naming your company. Things like keeping the name short, simple, and easy to write and remember are key. Think Apple, Google, Nike, Amazon…they’re all short and simple. Also be sure your name will allow your company to grow. If you name your bakery Cookies by Camille, what happens when you’re ready to make pies or doughnuts? These are just a couple of important branding considerations.
Remember, too, that branding is not the same as advertising. Sure, your advertising may fall into this category, but branding is much broader and far-reaching. Ducttapemarketing.com shares that small businesses have many opportunities to build online and offline communities. Once you have your brand set, you can hit social media outlets and create a presence there wi the relevant, shareable content. Growing your community is important and a branding service can help you there. One key is to pick a couple of places and focus there, don’t try to be all over the place at one time.
Digital Branding Services
You would be hard-pressed these days to find a business that doesn’t have some sort of digital presence. Even if they don’t have a website, they probably have a Facebook or LinkedIn, Instagram, or Twitter account. And on these accounts, their brand should be apparent. A digital branding service can help you create and upkeep the digital branding that is so critical to a business.
Have you ever heard of a business, then looked it up online only to find it not there? You probably forgot about that business and moved on. Without a digital presence, this could happen to your business. A digital branding service can help out here. Here are just some of the things they can help you with:
- Website set up
- Blog set up
- Email templates
- Social media presence
- Digital logo
- Content creation
- Synchronizing your content to make it consistent
There is a lot to think about. For instance, your digital logo needs to match your non-digital logo. If you have merch, it has to match as well; and merchandise is a huge part of branding. Even if you are a local, small business that works mostly through word of mouth, your brand is still important as is your digital brand. You probably ultimately want your business to grow and reach more customers; digital branding can help.
Choosing a Branding Service
You’ve made the decision to engage some professional help with your branding. Now how do you go about finding the right one for you? This article shares some great tips on doing just that, and this should be able to guide you in the right direction.
- Make sure they understand your business. A service may do great work with a large, glamorous business, but are they going to understand your small-sized, not so glamourous one? Make sure that they not only do great work but that they’ll do great work with you.
- Check their creativity. It’s important that the work a branding service does for you is for you. You don’t want cookie-cutter branding, you want specialized, personalized branding help, so make sure you’re getting it.
- Find out who is doing what. Because branding has so many components, it’s hard for someone to do it all. That’s part of the reason you’re outsourcing, right? So check and see who is doing your logo artwork, is it the same person doing your content writing? If so, is this okay with you or do you want specialists?
- Research them. Make sure you do your part, and that means some research. Google them, check testimonials, and read reviews. Ask to see some past work they’ve done. Compare a couple of different branding services, everything from cost to time frames to ideas they are giving you.
Remember, this is for you and about you. Don’t settle for a branding service you won’t be happy with. Find the best one for you and your company specifically.
The Bottom Line on Branding Services
It is difficult to do it all when you have a company. After all, there is a lot to do. Even if your company is just you and it’s small, branding is still pretty high on the importance list. You want to cover all bases, from logos to social media to your website. Taking this on yourself can use up a lot of your valuable time that you could be putting towards other areas of your business. Let someone else take this on and free yourself up for other areas you can attend to.
Remember, your brand sets the tone of your company. It should appeal to your target audience, reflect your ideals, products, and service. Your brand should be consistent on all platforms and reach those you’re seeking to connect with. Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed with this when it’s easy to work with a professional branding service.