As an entrepreneur, there are many questions you have probably asked yourself by now, like, for starters, what your company’s mission is and the product or service it will offer. But, what about this doozy: the brand. How do you see your company’s brand? As an extension of yourself or something else entirely? Alright, admittedly this could trigger existential crises left and right, but do not panic. It is an open question that seeks a creative and informed answer that only you can come up with. So, let’s get your wheels turning.
First of all, what is a brand? In the simplest of terms, it is a combination of name, slogan and design, among other elements, that should come together seamlessly in order to help the customer distinguish between goods and services. However, it goes way deeper because branding is much more than a message or font style, it is perception. Whose perception? The public’s, which means you need a focused message that is not rigid but adaptable, capable of evolving with its audience. Therefore, your brand must be able to change according to consumer behavior, so keep your finger on the pulse.
The following are two of the most important elements you should consider when coming up with a brand that connects with your audience and sets you apart.
A target market is the group of consumers at which a product or service is aimed. Who will use your product and/or service? What needs or wants will it satisfy? Hence, your company’s brand will only be successful if it is in touch with its customers and also delivers on the promise. For that reason, defining your target market is an essential part of coming up with your company’s brand; they go hand in hand. You can pinpoint who your customer is by, among other things, conducting research and analyzing your findings like Nancy Drew, asking your loved ones or colleagues for their opinion, or maybe spending a day at a competition’s place to gain insight. The only way to know who will buy your product and/or service is by conducting market research. After you find your target, deliver in such a way that you turn him or her into a loyal customer.
What is your company’s mission? What about its values? The brand should reflect both as well as the culture, history, and business plan. Why? Because taking all these ingredients into account and letting them simmer will deliver a brand that captures the company’s essence and reflects its identity. It is not just about distinguishing yourself from the competition, it is also about being authentic. Once the brand is aligned with the company’s identity, it will deliver a clear message, give the business credibility, connect with the target market, motivate the consumer to buy the goods and/or services, and create loyalty.
The importance of creating and maintaining a strong brand cannot be stressed enough. Thus, spend as much time as you can researching, defining, and building yours. Your brand is your company and a truly great one creates new customers easily, has a steady base of loyal ones, and can be a catalyst for positive change in whichever industry it operates in. Build something you can be proud of.
Mayra Nadal Luciano
Mayra holds a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Marketing with a Minor in Law from Bentley University and a Juris Doctor degree (JD) from Inter-American University of Puerto Rico Law School. She is currently working in Puerto Rico’s finance industry.