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The Standards of Branding

What is it about branding that drives so much business? Having a stunning logo and a loveable mascot have no direct impact on the quality of the product or service being offered. Yet, the most successful companies have an established brand that people, whether intentional or not, associate directly with high quality and standards.

Throughout this article I will outline some core qualities of building a brand, the difficulties in changing your brand and the art of re-branding.

Image of core of a brand

The Core of a Brand

In the ever-growing business world, great branding has become essential. Branding can be the thing that differentiates you from your competitors and launches your product or service to the forefront of customers’ minds.

Because of these benefits, brand “standards” need to be chosen early on in the process of building your brand. So, what are these brand “standards”? Here are a few…

STANDARD #1 – Brand Voice

Build a consistent brand voice that really focuses on the core values that you want to convey. Build your brand around what values you truly believe your brand should speak to - being genuine goes a long way. What we try and portray in our brand voice is a professional and friendly tone that suggests we are experts in our field and involved in our community. We want our voice to stress the integrity, good work ethic, teamwork and excellence that our company stands for. And that is what you should do as well.

Image of core of a brand
STANDARD #2 – Brand Foundation

When building a brand, start from the basics. Take a few minutes to yourself or talk to friends and family and brainstorm what you truly want. The brand foundation are the characteristics that a brand aims to speak to in the minds of the consumers. Whether you want to invoke feelings of great customer service through a dedicated workforce or feelings of innovation and excitement with your top-of-the-line products, the important thing to remember is to weave those characteristics into all aspects of your brand.

STANDARD #3 – Simplicity

Whether it be logo design, advertisements, packaging, and so on, the golden rule is to always keep it simple. Too much complexity is hard to comprehend. True, it is difficult to make your branding both simple and memorable, so if you can accomplish both, people will be more drawn towards your products or services.

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Difficulties in Changing a Brand

Rebrands are a mysterious thing; some rebrands will effortlessly be accepted and praised, while others are condemned and forgotten. The real skill is tweaking an accepted brand and altering it just enough, so that it does not become unrecognizable. Remember that your brand image is a means to communicate with your audience.

Like any serious relationship, the brand and the audience have a connection. Sometimes taking away what the audience knows and loves may cause some anxiety. Although serious changes can effectively be made to a company’s branding, you should consider not doing them all at once.

The Art of Re-Branding

As mentioned earlier, changing your brand can be very dangerous. However, most great companies did not absolutely nail their branding on the first attempt. To truly create a timeless brand, it takes mistakes and modifications, feedback and time, along with many other factors.

The true art of re-branding is nurturing the transition; do not force it upon people and respect any feedback that you receive. Even a re-brand does not need to be perfect; like most things in business your branding should be an ongoing work in progress.

A great way to successfully re-brand is to involve the community and make an event out of it. When people are involved in decisions, they are more willing to accept changes. Keep in mind, you must have a process in place that allows for everyone to be happy – perhaps a vote by committee.

Hopefully, while reading this article you've learned a little about the secrets of branding, so if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to leave a comment below.

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And as always, thanks for reading!

Stephen Malott

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