How well do you know your own brand? If I asked you to define your brand in a sentence, could you do it? If you don’t have a clear picture in mind, you can be sure your customers don’t either.
A brand is more than a company name or a logo. It’s your reputation, your marketing strategy, and more. Put simply, a brand is a communication tool, and investing the time into establishing a clear brand pays off. Without the visibility and credibility that a strong brand delivers, your product is indistinguishable from the next one – it might as well be invisible. A brand is what helps you stand out from the crowd. This applies just as much for finding customers as it does for attracting talent: a well-built brand will do the talking for you.
Why build a brand?
If you want a brand that speaks to your audience, you’re going to need to put the effort in to build it. Don’t rely on the brand to build itself. Put the groundwork in now, and the brand will do the work for you later. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits a brand gives you:
- A brand endures. Transactions come and go, and money is the same no matter where it comes from, but the feeling you get from an interaction with a brand will last for a long time.
- Building is a lot easier than rebuilding. Building a great brand is a lot easier than repairing an old or damaged one. Don’t wait for something to happen or your brand might get defined for you, in a way you may not like.
- People want to be included and be a part of something. Did you grow up a “Toys ‘R Us kid”? Are you an American Express “member”? (Think about how well that works – it makes you feel more special than being “just” a cardholder. “Membership has its privileges” indeed!) The connection to a popular brand is powerful. Create something that people brag about to their friends.
- People associate great feelings with brands. Think Levis, Campbell’s Soup, or Apple — just saying the names creates a feeling that’s familiar to you. You don’t need to describe it any more than just the brand.
At the end of the day, the question is, how hard do you want to work? Let the brand do the work for you. Take an example: how often do you explain what you do or where you work to someone? It can take a while for them to get it. But when someone says, “I’m an Engineer for Google,” people don’t ask “Where?” or “What does Google do?”
How to build a brand
Now that we know why a brand is so critical to your company’s success, here are some tips for how to do it right:
- Know your purpose and stick to it.
Go out there and be a company that will service people, keep the world connected, keep you hydrated, guarantee overnight delivery — whatever it is. That becomes your brand. Don’t lose sight of what makes you stand out.
- Think long term.
Disneyland wasn’t always the “happiest place on earth”. It took Disney decades to reach that level. Branding takes time. Think about what you can do today that will lay the groundwork
- Know your audience.
Do you REALLY know what your clients or customers want, or are you selling what YOU want — and just assuming that therefore, THEY should want it too?
- Put some feeling into it.
Does your brand invoke a feeling or emotion? What feeling do you get when you think of Cadillac or Life Savers? A great brand causes a reaction internally.
At Averity, we strive to build a brand around hiring people, and that’s what sets us apart. Other recruiters may focus on delivering resumes, filling positions, or finding skills, but when it comes down to it, you’re not interacting with resumes and skills on a daily basis. Your coworkers are people. That’s one of the reasons why we built our Human Platform. Averity’s Human Platform makes it easy to find all the information you need about the candidates — that is, the people — that you’re looking for.
So give some thought to your brand. Know what you’re offering, identify the feelings you want your brand to evoke, and get that message out there. It’s worth it.