A brand is fundamental to a business’s success. Its message, the colours, its position—all of this and more matters when you’re developing one. That’s why it’s so baffling to see businesses take all the wrong steps to create a brand by first spending more time and money on the logo before focusing on what matters most: their business!
While the logo is important, it is not the most important thing about your brand—only a visual representation of it. If your world has suddenly been rocked by what we just said, it’s time to talk…to yourself, rather.
Without further ado, take a seat and ask yourself these very important questions regarding your brand.
First, the Big Ones
Before asking yourself the big questions, ask yourself these crucial ones first:
- Am I just in this for the money?
- Am I doing this to compete with company A, B, and beyond and only that?
If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to these two questions, stop right now! You are definitely not ready to start a business. We’re not saying this to dissuade you from the idea of starting a business altogether so much as to stop looking at your brand and business as merely creations for profit’s sake. Thinking of your brand as for-profit alone will only make you blend in with your competition, and we know that’s not what you really want to do.
Questions to Ask Yourself as an Outsider
Firstly, think of who you are talking to when you try to describe your business to someone. This person—let’s call them Jill—has no time to hear specifics about you. She just wants a basic understanding of who you are and what you can offer her.
She will ask things like the following:
- Who are you?
- What makes you different?
- What do you have to offer?
- Why are you in this business? (See our previous points as how not to answer this question)
- How do I use your product/service?
- When would I need your product/service?
- Where can I buy your product/service if I’m interested?
If you feel frustrated by all of Jill’s questions, don’t be. Her inquiries all amount to how you can determine who you’re trying to sell your business’s product or service to.
Questions to Ask as a Business Owner
These are not only great questions to ask yourself, but your business’s staff or co-partner. There may come a point when a revisit of your brand is necessary as its overall position and purpose got skewed along the way (please see our previous point about putting the logo first).
It’s best to ask everyone involved with your brand the following:
- Who are we, really?
- Who are we talking to?
- Who do we want to really talk to?
- Who are we competing with?
- Where do our competitors stand?
- Why are we all doing this?
- What are we all doing?
- How are we communicating with others?
- Where are we investing the most time and energy?
- What problems are we solving, and does anyone care?
- When people think about us, what are their overall feelings?
- What feelings do we want people to have when they think about us?
- What benefits are we offering to our customers?
- What kind of personality do we have?
Once all of these questions are answered, only then can you form a reinvention of your brand (if you’re off the right track) or get your brand strategy going if it’s a new one.
Approach your brand as if you were a psychoanalyst. If you want to really get to know what makes you and others tick, you would want to know each and every part of what makes your brand—and therefore your business—unique. Only by answering all of the questions we’ve written down can you really move forward. When you’re finished, put that strategy into action with all of the fun stuff—making the logo, getting the marketing going, and so on.
Still stumped on forming a proper brand? Need a hand with answering these questions? Contact us at V3 Media. One-on-one consultation is especially handy where figuring out your brand is concerned, and sometimes it’s nice to get a little perspective.