Small Business Brief


Brand Development 101: 8 Steps to Building Your Own Business Identity

Every year, businesses in the U.S. spend hundreds of billions of dollars on branding efforts.

Have you begun building a brand for your business? The truth is, everything you do to promote your business either helps or hurts your brand as a whole.

What are you doing to help your business stand out and ensure that you’re sending the right message to current and potential customers? Are you happy with the results you’re getting from your current branding strategy?

If you need help with brand development for your business, keep reading.

Listed below are eight essential brand development tips that every business owner ought to know.

1. Know Your Mission

The first step toward a strong brand-building strategy is to know your mission and what you want to accomplish with your brand.

If you look at any well-designed business website, you’ll see that their mission statement is displayed in a prominent way. It’s not enough just to say what your business is all about, though. You also need to show it.

Make sure your business’s mission statement acts as a guiding light for all the decisions you make regarding things like social media posts, advertising campaigns, and logo design. If you don’t have a mission statement yet, get on that ASAP.

2. Develop an Elevator Pitch

As a business owner, you need to be able to describe your business in a succinct yet powerful way.

Get to work crafting an elevator pitch that describes your business, your products or services, and your mission statement in a way that people remember.

Write your elevator pitch down and then go through it with a fine tooth comb. Get rid of any fluff and make sure you’re answering the following questions:

  • What is my business?
  • What do we do?
  • Why do our customers want/need it?

Ideally, your elevator pitch will only be around 50 words. It takes some time to put together, but it’ll be worth it in the end.

3. Separate Yourself

It’s important to figure out how you’re going to separate your business from your competition, too.

In order to do this, you first need to spend some time evaluating your competition. Once you figure out their branding strategy and what they’re doing to make themselves stand out, you can start working to make your branding strategy different.

There’s definitely room in the market for your business, you just have to find a way to make it stand out. 

4. Know Your Target Audience

Spend some time thinking about your target audience, too. Who are you trying to reach with your marketing and advertising strategy? What kind of people do you want your brand to attract? 

The more specific you can be when identifying your target audience, the better.

Think carefully about who you want to buy your product or make use of your service?

Don’t just say you want to target men or women or adults. What type of men do you want to reach? Do you want to target young women or middle-aged women?

Remember, if your advertising is generic and you try to reach everyone, your brand is going to become generic. As a result, you’re going to have a hard time reaching anyone at all.

5. Make It Personal

Once you’ve identified your target audience, start making your social media posts and advertisements as personal as possible.

Think carefully about their pain points, where they spend time online, and what kinds of tactics work best when it comes to reaching and connecting with them.

Be sure to get personal when sending out marketing emails, too.

A generic email that seems like it was written to all of your customers at once isn’t going to be as effective as a personalized email that takes into account the specific products someone was looking at or has purchased in the past. 

6. Promote, Promote, Promote

Once you’ve nailed down your target audience and the kind of message you want to deliver to them, it’s time to start promoting your business and building your brand.

There are tons of different promotional strategies you can use, from YouTube ads and social media marketing to blogging and billboards. Choose the strategies that make the most sense for your target audience (remember, get personal) and start promoting.

It might be tempting to keep fussing with your ads and trying to make them perfect. In the end, though, if you never put anything out because you’re afraid it’s not good enough, you’re never going to see any returns.

7. Be Consistent

When you’re building a brand, it’s important to be consistent. Stick to the same color scheme, font, and writing style.

Remember, the goal is to get people to recognize your logo and start forming positive associations with your business. They’re not going to be able to do that if you keep changing things.

It takes repeated exposure for people to start trusting your brand. Be consistent and they’ll start forming that trust sooner.

8. Know When to Ask for Help

Finally, don’t be afraid to find out more about the services professional branding experts have to offer.

If you’re struggling to nail down your mission statement or reach your target audience, a marketing and branding professional can help. Reach out to a professional online or in your area and let them know where you’re struggling.

If you’re hesitant to spend money to work with a professional, remember that it’s worth it to invest in help now if it helps you build your brand and start increasing your sales.

Learn More About Brand Development

As you can see, there are a lot of different steps you can take to step up your brand development game.

Keep these tips in mind and you’ll have a much easier time connecting with current and future customers and helping them create positive associations with your business.

Do you want to learn more about marketing and brand development? If so, be sure to check out some of the other articles on our site today.

This article on free advertising is a great starting point, especially for businesses that are working with a limited budget.