Starting your business requires a lot of your time and energy to get it up and running. As you build a loyal following and serve more clients, your marketing will require less of your efforts and other resources, but strengthening your brand never stops needing attention.
Before you attempt to strengthen your brand, make sure these three key elements are in place:
- Your product or service is one that is needed and wanted.
- Your product or service is the highest quality.
- Your business can deliver on promises and exceed expectations consistently.
Now, the challenge is to take a step back and view your business from a strategic perspective. This may even lead to a complete shift in your thinking, which could be a great thing and provide a refreshed direction. Please examine each of these areas carefully with lots of thought and discussion with trusted others, before you implement changes:
Authenticity — Be true to yourself.
- Does your passion ooze out of your business?
- Does your personality shine through in your brand communications?
- Does your personal conviction back up your mission and vision?
This may seem simple on the surface, but it requires serious individual reflection. Remember, strong brands take a stand on issues with respect to values.
Leverage – Maximize your strengths and minimize your weaknesses.
- What are your true strengths (real and perceived)?
- What are your true weaknesses (real and perceived)?
- Where are your potential communication gaps?
Be honest with yourself and commit to specific actions that will maximize your strengths, minimize your weaknesses and fill in potential gaps.
Value creation – Give a little more ‘experience’ than originally anticipated.
- Are you providing the most value you can?
- Are you providing better value than your competitors?
- Are you communicating your value to your target audience?
Review your deliverables and ask your customers how they feel. Ask your target audience and customers what value they expect and what value they receive.
Begin today with a vision of where you want to be over the next 3, 6, 9 and 12 months. Then commit to strengthening your brand with a plan and tangible actions. Start your journey with baby steps…start small, and continue thinking BIG.
Building a strong brand is not an easy task. It requires honesty, a non-biased perspective, nurturing and leadership. It can be exhausting and stressful at times, but it is the most important and rewarding thing that you can do.