Branding: Your Secret Weapon to Drive Growth

Branding is a tool that declutters, clarifies, defines, and creates and holds attention and rapport. But how? It starts with building humanity into your brand, defining the assets to amplify that ‘humanity’ and consistently showing up in a trustworthy, honest way.

What does that mean to your business?

People buy from people. They are loyal to people and businesses they like, that align with their morals, even.

Your brand has people behind it: it has you! You should infuse your business with the core values that are important to you and the business, and, importantly, to your ideal target audience. You want to speak to them from a place of authenticity, from a place of humanity, so start by listing the human traits you want your business to convey.

You do that by defining the Brand Personality:

YOUR SOUL

‘Who’ is your brand and what are the traits you absolutely must show up displaying? Your soul is a list of traits you can’t help but be, it’s intrinsically you. Are you honest – maybe even blunt – but you’re that way to save your clients time and to educate them on how to be better? List it! Are you quirky and fun because you enjoy life and love making others happy? List it! Then show up as those traits, always, everywhere, consistently.

YOUR STYLE

How do you envisage engaging with your potential clients? Will you be friendly but focused, professional and an industry leader? Nurturing? Commit to whatever your style, write it down. It will form part of your Brand Promise and your customer service strategy.

YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD

If you were a supermarket product, would you be Virgin olive oil, a can of baked beans, a bottle of champagne? and what other products would you sit next to or directly in competition with on the shelf? If your business was a car, what make and model would it be? This is your Market Positioning. Do you want to be perceived to be luxurious and expensive, or cheap and cheerful, or something in between?

What brands are you attracted to – in AND out of our industry? List them. Then look at the way they communicate verbally, visually. Examine why you like them:

  • Is it because they stand for something that you’re aligned with?
  • Do they entertain you in a specific way?
  • Do they have an interesting look-and-feel about them that you consider stylish or appropriate to your brand?

You can emulate traits in other brands that you admire as long as you do it uniquely and in a way that you can commit to. Have a world-changing ideal or belief? Stand by it. Just because you’re a business doesn’t mean you can’t change the world! Remember, if your brand was a person, it would stand for something! Perhaps it would be Vegan, changing the world one food choice at a time, or in support of minority groups, providing a platform to make change at a larger scale? Your brand, standing for something, will attract a strong loyal following because of the emotional values that resonate strongly and align with those held by your ideal client base. You’re not just a brand, you’re a change-maker.

Brand-Archetype-Icons

Once your brand personality is defined, then everything else is used to amplify and complement those traits, from:

  • The colours you choose in your brand identity (logo) website and literature design
  • The fonts you select – for your logo but also for the headers and paragraph fonts you choose to complement your logo. Remember, it all works together! If it all works together to highlight a single goal, even better! Even stronger!
  • Other brand assets, the types of images you choose, the style of layout features, the staff you hire, the tone-of-voice you use. They ALL work to point to and strengthen who your business is, as if it is a single human. THIS is what makes you appealing to potential buyers or customer, to other humans! They get who you are and what you’re about, which is more than just making money.

So you’re set up, you know ‘who’ you are and you’re now wearing your best accessories. What next?

Now you have to show up consistently, this is how trust is built! You’re able to make mistakes – we all do, it’s ‘human,’ it’s how we grow, it’s how we learn! Just ensure that when you do, you’re an ‘honest’ brand and you own up to it. If you’re a professional, industry leader – share that learning. Face the good and the bad but do it CONSISTENTLY.

This is the easiest way to gain and grow trust and it’s super easy! It starts with a Spring Cleaning!

If you were to have all your branded collateral laid out on a table, it might not look EXACTLY the same, but does it look like it’s part of the same family? Do your colours and font selection show up ‘dressed’ the same? Is there a prime logo position that is constantly being used? Do you have a couple of logo variations to help you in a literal ‘tight spot?’

For example, do you have a long and stacked version for your logo, does it often appear on the top-right-hand corner but where it can’t it is centered? These things matter, they’re tidy. Tidy translates to undistracting, non-confusing, comforting, and allows the viewer / reader to focus on the important stuff – the messaging – but always with you there…. in their peripheral vision.

Branding and Spring Cleaning allow you to streamline the time-wasting exercises so you can focus on the growth of your business. It allows you to truly KNOW your brand, sometimes better than you know yourself. And when you ‘know’ your brand, you show up strong, confident and with purpose.

A strong, clear brand provides clarity both internally and externally, clearing important space for business growth.

Invest the time it takes to develop a strong visual brand with a clear tone of voice and personality. When your brand expertise grows, your business grows.

Want to learn more? Email us at inquiry@hillandco.co and we’ll continue the conversation.

Be Well,

Caroline Vermeulen

Branding and Graphics Design Lead

 

PS: Would you like to see what over 150 businesses who have worked with Hill & Co. are raving about, including some of the largest retailers, brands, jewelry & diamond manufacturers globally from Blue Nile and Rapaport to fashionable newcomers like Futura and Cast?

Learn more about our Business Growth Game Plan by clicking here.

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