If you're a small biz owner than you can probably relate when I say I constantly feel inundated by new products, technologies, and techniques I "should" be using to improve my business. Everyone seems to be offering some sort of PDF freebie, masterclass, or online course all promising to be the missing piece in my business puzzle.
You can take a deep breathe, because I'm not trying to sell you on some magic pill or quick overnight fix. What I am here to do is to tell you about a foundational piece of your business that you might be thinking about all wrong.
That foundational piece? Brand identity.
If your business is the products and/or services you offer in exchange for compensation, your brand is the personality behind those offers.
Your business may be wedding photography, nutritional coaching, or interior design. But that is NOT your brand. Your brand is the way you uniquely position yourself within your perspective industry so that you can stand out and stay top of mind with prospective clients.
Are you a house-plant obsessed wedding photographer who is known for remembering all of your clients anniversaries and celebrating by sending a cute succulent? That's branding.
Are you a nutritional coach who is known for your catchphrase "Eat the damn cake!" because you believe in balance and not restriction? That's branding.
Branding is your unique position within your industry and all the things that you do to place yourself in the mind's of your customer in a certain way.
Your brand is not your logo.
Don't start your business with a logo. I make logos as a large part of my living and I am STILL telling you that. Hacking together a logo and placing it on your product is not a brand strategy. Analyzing your competitors, conducting market research to tailor to a specific audience, and deciding on your unique positioning within your industry? That's brand strategy.
From there you can go onto to create stellar visuals that you can use consistently to represent your biz.
Having a solid brand strategy is what helps businesses scale and stay top-of-mind. If you are constantly portraying your business using different visuals or have a "something for everyone" approach, you will be disappointed when you don't stand out and your bottom line suffers.
Being a generalist "works" for companies like Amazon or Walmart. It won't work nearly as well if you're a new business trying to capture the attention of everyone under the sun.
Having a unique selling proposition is EVERYTHING.
What is it about you and your biz that makes you different from others in your industry? Establish this and lean into it alllll the way. This is what brand recognition is made of.
Trio's unique selling proposition is that I offer brand strategy by means of three core things: DESIGN, PHOTOGRAPHY, AND COPY. I also rely heavily on burnt orange and dark green to establish brand recognition (and give off the feeling of adventure and outdoorsy-ness) and use plants all throughout my visuals. This is just a summary, but establishing what it is that makes you different and really owning it will make it all that much easier for prospective clients to latch onto what it is that you're all about.
Remember, trying to blend into your industry will never serve you or your people as well as you think it might.
Branding is the art of differentiation.
Branding is about owning what it is that makes you different and amplifying it through messaging and visuals that support your ethos. Creating a brand strategy first and supporting it through kick ass visuals and a messaging will make it clear to your people who you are, what you do, and what makes you awesome.
So if you're one of the many people who thought brand identity was about having a single logo that you plop onto a business card, I hope this post helped shine some light on how integral true brand strategy is to building a magnetic brand that attracts dream clients on repeat.
If you're ready to take your brand to the next level through intentional, heart-felt strategy, visuals, and messaging, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and let's set up a free strategy consult to chat about what makes you awesome.