Though there are plenty of things to worry about during the start-up phase of any business, there are few things as important as brand creation and management. Whether you are securing investors or building your customer base, your brand is often one of the major determining factors in your success.
The following tips and tricks are great ways for your start-up to establish & build a brand:
Understand the Many Facets of Your Brand
Many start-ups get lost in the act of brand building and fail to realize just how detailed the process can be. The end result is a weak brand. Brand building and management is not just about everyone sees your brand. It is about how investors, employees, customers and partners see your business individually. Though positive aspects for each group tend to offer some benefit to others, building a truly strong brand is about focusing on each specific group and showing them exactly how your start-up is the best target for their money, time and trust. By monitoring and building your brand from each perspective, you can ensure that your brand is solid, stable and strong.
Research Your Market to Help Establish Your Brand
With the competitive nature of a globalized economy, market research is more important than ever. Establish a demographic & market and build your brand from there. Knowing your market makes establishing value and building your brand much easier. This also ensures that other parts of your brand, such as the name, logo and advertising, are honed easily to fit your market for improved results in your start-up efforts. Each of these factors can impact the success of your start-up. It is also much harder to alter many of these smaller aspects once the business is established. By researching before and during the start-up phase of your business, you position it for long-term success.
Embrace Your Brand
You can ask anyone what they feel makes the brand of a large corporation or business and get many answers in return. It is easy to promote a brand after it is created. However, establishing a brand in a start-up is very different. Most start-ups have only a few employees. This means that everyone should be embracing and living the brand of the company. When so few people are involved, every action you take reflect directly back on your start-up and could help or hurt its success. If you are living your brand and integrating into your practices, partners and eventually employees will be more likely to adopt your stance as well. This makes brand management and promotion easier in later stages of the business. The opposite is also true. If you live in opposition to your brand, your employees, investors and customers will be the first to notice and point it out to others.
Build Your Brand from the Beginning
Every second that a business delays in building its brand it is risking failure. Branding is not a process that requires substantial investments or dedicated professional services. Branding should start at the conception. This means that it should be an integral part of the start-up process. Branding establishes a number of things, ranging from your target market to your potential competition. This makes it one of the most crucial yet overlooked aspects of the start-up process. By establishing your brand early, you are defining the value and benefits that your start-up will offer consumers, investors and other entities. While making money is important for any business to succeed, creating value and establishing a market are two major keys to long-term success.
In summary, know what you are trying to convey with the brand, do the market research to know what your target audience will respond to, and don’t delay in executing — just do it !!!
About the Author
Eric Armstrong is a marketing professional specializing in qualitative market research.
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