When it comes to branding, many of us have an idea of what it takes to create and build a brand. We get a nice logo designed, we choose our favourite colours, we throw together some strong key messages and voila, we’re branded, right? Wrong. How can you make sure that you create a brand that will appeal to your audience and at the same time communicate your message?
Unfortunately, there is no one size fits all solution to branding. Each brand is unique and requires individual time and attention. One blog post will not tell you how to create your brand, what I can tell you, however, is what some of the barriers are and some solutions to overcoming them.
I conducted a poll a couple years back on what the major brand barriers were and found that the majority of people sited either a lack of funds, unfamiliarity with brand principles or no access to good ‘branders’. Some even said, they didn’t have a problem with branding, but that could be a problem in and of itself. So I turned to the experts at Verb Strategy & Creative (Verb) a professional marketing and branding firm to get their response on breaking through some major brand barriers.
Lack of funds
Maintaining the health of ones brand is similar to maintaining ones own physical health, there is an ultimate cost to not taking care of oneself and this is no different for a brand. Too many business owners see branding as an expense that they’d rather not suffer. Others grow their businesses from 1-store to multi location enterprises. See: Starbucks.
Unfamiliarity with brand and design principles
Hire professionals. Hire the right professionals. Often times when a business owner comes to the realization that they need help with their brand, they’ll call a graphic designer. That is like putting the cart befor the horse. Imagine planning to design & build a house. Wouldn’t you work with an architect before calling the general contractor? Similarly you should be working with a marketing/branding professional before working with a designer.
Insufficient access to proper brand builders
Hmmm…. Branding professionals can be found at most advertising agency’s. The problem of finding proper help arrises when one tries to find a freelancer, independent guy or worse yet, a student to solve their brand issues.
No barriers, my brand is on point!
Are you sure? Even the worlds most iconic brands are monitoring the health of what they understand is their most important asset, their brand. Companies who become complacent often find themselves fighting to regain marketshare that once was firmly in their control, see: Palm, Dunkin’ Dounuts, IBM, Sears, WWE, Atari… the list is endless.
A proper brand takes time to develop, it takes research and some deep soul searching. Creating a brand does not happen over night, nor is it something that we can spend a few hundred dollars on and have it done. Creating a brand is a very involved process and requires an investment of not just funds but of your time and energy.
What barriers have been keeping you from fully developing your brand?