- No products in the cart.
There are many misconceptions about what a brand is and is not, but at its core, it can be broken down to one simple concept. Your brand is what people are saying about you when you’re not in the room—whether or not it’s because of anything you did intentionally. So what is being said? And is it time to step in and change that conversation? The following are five reasons you might need to:
1. Your Market or Offerings Have Changed
It’s not unusual to find that your business has changed significantly from where it began. After all, even Kellogg’s cereal began as hospital food. If you’ve found yourself moving away from your original target market, expanding it, or altering your product or service offerings to better suit a certain demographic, it’s important to make sure you’re doing so intentionally and with a focused purpose. This dictates everything from which product or service features you’ll expand on to where you advertise to which charitable organizations you sponsor and everything in between.
2. No One Knows What You Do
An elevator speech is called that for a reason—you should be able to clearly and concisely communicate what your business does it would take you to ride the elevator from the lobby to your destination floor or vice versa. If your speech requires more of a plane ride than an alternative to the stairs, it’s likely time to get a handle on that. The fact of the matter is, you often don’t even have time for an elevator pitch with your consumers. More often than not, its seconds—the seconds it takes them to subconsciously acknowledge and then flip past your ad in the magazine, the seconds it takes for them to arrive at your website and decide whether they’ll stay or go, etc. Can you say everything they need to know about your company in that time? Certainly not. But can you say enough to get them to delve further? Absolutely. And that requires clear messaging from every stakeholder, web platform and sign in your business.
3. Sales are Down
This is perhaps the most obvious reason that leads a company toward change. Whether your leads simply aren’t converting to sales, you aren’t reaching your financial goals, or worse, your revenues are on the decline, one thing is certain—it likely did not happen overnight. An effective brand has established a competitive niche, a credible persona, and is consistent in the way it communicates all of the above. This unswerving brand messaging in turn builds trust with the consumer, which puts them at ease for purchasing. If customers are confused about how you differ from the competition, or receive inconsistent information from one touch point to the next, they are likely to move on.
4. You’re a Master of None
We all know Nike is truly great at making athletic apparel—more specifically, shoes. They are stylish, performance engineered, and endorsed by some of the biggest names in the business. Could they then also make a great fitting high heel that did the same? Of course! But they’ve chosen not to because they realize trying to be everything to everyone would water down their credibility and take away from the resources that make their star products so successful. While it’s tempting to offer as many services as you can to capitalize on opportunity, chasing down too many options will leave you looking mediocre. Proper brand analysis of your strengths and weaknesses can give you perspective on a more realistic strategy for your company to ensure its maximum potential for growth and profit.
5. You Need a New Look
Left last on the list for a reason, this is probably the most common thought that comes to mind when businesses think of branding. However, it’s truly the last puzzle piece that remains after brand development has been initiated. Once a business has decided on its message though, deployment of the brand through proper visuals is vital. Consistency, again, is the key to earning consumer trust so you must ask yourself—“Is my company’s look consistent with what we represent?” If you claim to be a professional and forward thinking business, is your website modern, clean and up to date? If you’d like to convince your target market that employing your services is an easy decision that will result in peace of mind, are you utilizing colors and a photo style that put them at ease? A re-brand of your business will help you assess potential hurdles, and communicate past them subconsciously to create an environment in which your consumer is eager to buy.