Is your brand story hemorrhaging as a result of COVID-19? Lately, everyone’s focus has been on staying safe and healthy as we come off of stricter quarantine protocols and begin to get back to a semblance of normal life. However, just because YOU aren’t physically ill, doesn’t mean you should neglect your brand’s condition. Some recent statistics tell us that brands that sport a consistent message and feel across platforms see a 23 percent increase in revenue over those that don’t.

You may have had to take your hand off of protecting your brand’s core essence in order to make it through these tough times. Or perhaps you’ve started a new business or shifted drastically as a result of the state of the current economy. In any case, stop and perform a brand health check to ensure you’re keeping your core in mind. 

Your business and pockets will thank you!

Why Branding Is So Important

Let’s talk about branding for a moment.

Customers are much more likely to buy from you, opt-in to your email list, or click on your offer if your messaging and look are consistent across all of your broadcasting platforms. It legitimizes your enterprises and makes you someone that your avatar wants to trust; ultimately leading to more sales.

But, as we all know branding for small businesses is hard enough. Throw in having to do some major shifts and pivots in order to survive the economic downturn and you’ve got a potential recipe for a brand that doesn’t reflect your original vision. This could be good or it could be bad, depending on your situation and the goals you have as an entrepreneur. 

Regardless, it’s important to take stock of what’s going on with your brand!

Why?

Because 89 percent of customers stay loyal to brands that share their values

When you build your brand and business on a purpose, it shines though and people want to support you. This makes taking stock of what you’ve got going on brand-wise regularly important. And though the task seems big, we’ve got a few quick questions you can ask yourself that’ll allow you to deep dive into the core elements of your brand and how their current statu fares!

1. What Does My Brand STAND FOR?

Do you really know?

Sometimes we’re so eager to bring our ideas to the market that we don’t dedicate the time we need to things like brand vision and story. This question is much deeper than what colors and fonts are we going to use in our visual style guide or on social media. 

It even goes beyond the value and benefit you want to offer your target audience.

This question helps you identify the core of what your brand is. What you stand for and hope to achieve by doing business. Your business’ “reason for being” essentially. 

If this is tough for you, take a look at some brands like Amazon, Nike and Dove. For Amazon, it’s connecting people with the things that they love, fast and easy. For Nike it’s promoting activity and athleticism for people of all ages and levels of skill. For Dove, it’s providing resources for healthy, accessible luxurious skin.

Because of this, hundreds of millions of people are dedicated to brands like this. Does your brand stand for something that people can resonate with? If not, now’s the perfect time to sit down and identify what the core “why” is behind it. It’s never too late! 

2. What Does My Brand SHOW UP AS On Different Platforms?

You’ve identified what you stand for, but what do people think you stand for?

When you show up on your social media pages, website, products, or emails, does your “why” resonate to your audience?

Now’s the time to take a strategic step back and take a critical look at all the mediums you use to communicate with your avatar in order to assess what it looks like you stand for. This is a great question to ask yourself as well as colleagues, friends, and even strangers if you can to get different perspectives on the public facing image of your brand.

You don’t want to focus on aesthetics here. You want to make sure you’re viewing from the angle of substance. Ask people what they think your brand is and what it stands for. Take notes and compare them to your own, then compare them to what your brand actually stands for.

You’d be surprised at the big difference in some people’s perception and your reality.  

3. Does My Brand Fulfil a WANT or a NEED?

Offering a customer-tailored unique value proposition is what sets most businesses apart. However, in today’s market where no idea is new and everything is oversaturated, you have to have an even higher appeal to truly stand out. 

This is where identifying what NEED or WANT your business fulfills comes in handy. 

In an interview with Entrepreneur.com, brand guru reveals that “the best brands are customer-centric, which means they’re created for the customer around a need that they have. Sure, a product or service solves a problem and a need but a brand is where something deeper comes in. You may have the best technology to solve the customer’s problem, but does your brand stand for something they care about?”

Do you offer hair solutions with sustainable ingredients that help protect the planet? Do you donate a portion of each sale to a special organization like an animal shelter or a children’s hospital? A good example of a brand that does this extremely well is Tom’s and their one for one program. Right now, their donation program is centralized around the COVID-19 relief effort but usually, their one for one program ensures that for every pair of Tom’s shoes purchased, one pair is given to a child in an impoverished country that can’t afford shoes.

This is a core element of their brand and part of the reason people are so devoted to it.  Their shoes may not be the most stylish or the most comfortable but their target audience has a devotion beyond the benefit of a new pair of shoes because of what others need they fulfill. 

If you can identify your own unique One for One, you’ll begin to see a true shift in the way your target audience not only interacts with your brand, but how their shift in commitment will go from what you offer to what you stand for; which is exponentially more valuable.

Final Thoughts

Though these 3 questions aren’t exhaustive, they’ll give you a big head start on identifying some of the critical elements you need to take stock of in order to ensure your brand is healthy. 

In some instances, you may not have all this figured out. In others, these elements may have shifted for one reason or another. But you need to take a critical look at what your brand is currently — no matter where you are in your journey. Then, after taking the time to thoroughly answer these questions, consider whether or not what you’re doing now is going to make you happy and successful in the long run. 

It’s never too late to shift in order to do something different in your business. However, you also don’t need to fix what isn’t broken. Think through ways to improve your overall substance as a brand, which in turn will enhance your customer experience tremendously.

Plus, being in tune with your brand will make you a better entrepreneur!

For more tips and tricks on how you can elevate your brand and CRUSH it at doing business, make sure to check out our other articles on how you can crush the e-commerce game on the  TSP Blog!


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