Effective branding is critical to success. There are lots of ideas around out there about branding, what it is, what it means, and what it does. Nailing jello to the wall is easier than nailing down one definition for branding.
Good, effective business branding ends up being an emotional tie to a set of experiences. Emotions explode in a part of the brain that is separate from the area that forms words. Have you ever been sad and unable to put the reason into words? Have you ever been happy and unable to explain it? How about in love? Emotions are in a separate part of the brain from words.
Imagine if all love songs covered the same ground. Lucky for the music industry emotions have difficulty translating into language. We know we over-think things. We refer to the “head” as the problem there. But emotions seem outside of the mind, so we put them in other places, like “you broke my heart” or ” I have a gut instinct about that guy.”
Good, effective branding grows around a group of experiences that have conveyed an emotion. One secondary emotion is passion. That’s why many good businesses thrive based on passion. Passion is not the most base of emotions but is usually is a result of a more primary emotion like love.
Let’s cover “Love” for a moment here. There is “I love my wife”, there is “I love my sister”, ” I love pizza”, “love for strangers” and lust. Those are five of the variations of love. Marketing will use different versions as needed. Sex sells, but the other four do as well.
A good brand will convey that one or more of those is in play in your business. I should tell you that a visible love for money will not go over well with your clients. They already assume that you are just in it for the money. The goal of good branding is to convey your love for something other than the customers cash. There is nothing wrong with having a desire to stay in business and provide for your family and even be providing jobs for people. But that message is not one that people want to hear.
What they want to feel is that your passion for helping others is your number one concern. Make it your #1 concern, and you will go much farther in a business. Define your brand (as best as you can in words) for your benefit. But know that your TRUE Brand is the ACTIONS that result. Your words will ring hollow if you mess this up.
Your ACTIONS are the true definition of your Brand.
There is nothing more off-putting to people than to go to “Friendlies Super-Mart” and be treated poorly by a grumpy employee. If your brand is “Friendly” you best be sure that “friendly” describes the person the public sees. Th”Friendly” is much easier if the CEO is the leader on this. Having a grumpy boss is hard for everyone. Every person in the organization is part of the brand. If someone is having a grumpy day, they either get the support they need or they voluntarily stay home.
The “Brand” of a company is the actions they take, every day, every minute. Ask any customer or client. They will tell you what your brand is and if it doesn’t match your intended brand, you are in trouble.