Branding Your Company – Logos and Tag Lines Aren’t Enough
By Scott Hepburn
Rebranding may be the most complicated and most risk-prone challenges of a business owner. You take a company or a product that people have come to know, trust and love….and you change it. Risk? Yeah. You screw this up and everything you’ve built disappears and you have to start from scratch.
Just ask Wendy Piersall.
Wendy launched eMoms at Home as a hobby. Now, just a few years later, the site is a seven-channel blog network and a legend in blogging and home-business circles.
The company recently pulled off one of the most difficult tricks in business: rebranding. The eMoms blog network is now known as Sparkplugging, so named because the bloggers and readers of the site are “Spark Plugs” – people who make things happen.
Branding is about more than logos and taglines. It’s a process of definition. It’s about finding your essence. It’s about creating your identity.
Consider the following:
- Color schemes
- Company name
- Brand promise
- Verbal descriptors of your company
Each of these is an important part of your brand. But before you begin on logos and taglines, take a look at things like brand promise. Words and pictures are symbols – how can you choose the symbols that represent what you stand for if you don’t know what you stand for?
Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to get started:
- What is the emotional need I satisfy for my clients? (Don’t confuse this with your products or services)
- Do the solutions I provide (products and services) measure up to the expressed and implied promises I make to my clients?
- If my company were a person, how would I describe its character?
- How should I position my company to best appeal to the clients who are most likely to invest in my product or service?
- Are “How I want my company to be perceived” and “How I portray my company” consistent?
- Could my business be more profitable if I re-evaluate my assumptions about what my clients are looking for?
Once you’ve begun to answer these questions, your copywriters, graphic designers and other marketing team members will be better equipped to create or re-define your brand.
Scott Hepburn is a veteran copywriter for PRstore, a full-service retail marketing franchise with 40 stores in 19 states. PRstore makes professional marketing accessible to small- to medium-sized businesses by offering affordable marketing solutions and eliminating the pricey retainers often required by traditional marketing agencies. For more marketing and business tips, visit the PRstore blog. To take your marketing to the next level without busting your budget, look for a PRstore near you.