You’re a busy person. I get it. Your days are brimming with projects, customer requests, last minute meetings… the list is endless. Running your own business is busy! The problem is, we are so busy working in our businesses that we forget to work on our businesses. It’s time to revive your brand.
If you’re anything like me, there’s an annoying voice in the back of your mind constantly reminding you that your brand is in dire need of some tender loving care. Unfortunately, the last time you sat down to work on your brand, the discussion was so vague that it left you with more questions than answers. You’re not alone.
I have good news. In most cases, you don’t need a complete “re-brand”. You just need a little good old fashion revival. Over the years, I’ve found various branding exercises that can produce massive results without the headache.
The best brands are easy to notice, remember, and talk about. Believe me, this does NOT happen naturally. You have to design your business to produce this result. The following guide will help you get inside your customer’s head and revive your brand in 2015.
1. How is your business different and better?
In my experience, the most powerful way to revive your brand is by remembering what makes you different. Business people like to call this your Unique Selling Proposition. Think about it from your customer’s perspective. In their eyes, what makes your business different and better from anyone else?
- What is the #1 reason your past customers chose you over the alternatives?
- What’s your superpower? Here’s a short guide to help you discover your superpower.
- What is the one thing that tells a customer they can’t live without you?
2. Why did you start in the first place?
Over time it can be easy to forget why you started your business. As I’ve written about before, people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. Remember, you started your business for a reason. The more you connect to your “why”, the more your customers will connect to your brand.
- What was the spark that compelled you to start your business?
- What do you love most about your business?
- How is your community better because of your business?
3. Who is your ideal customer?
If you could only have one customer, who would it be? Don’t believe the lie that your customers choose you. The truth is, you must first choose your customer. Once you’ve chosen your one customer, you can then market to them with definite clarity. If you can solve that one customer’s problem, there will be thousands of customers standing behind them.
- What is one thing you love about your ideal customer?
- What life event led your ideal customer to you?
- What is the single greatest thing your customer needs from you?
4. Where does your brand fit in your customer’s mind?
Great businesses understand every detail about their customer. In order for you to connect with your ideal customer, you need to know how they think about you. If your customer’s brain was a library, in what section would you be categorized? Marketers call this your Brand Positioning. Once you know where you fit in their mind, you are then better equipped to play to the strengths of that location.
- What emotion does my customer feel when they interact with my brand?
- Does my brand enhance a positive feeling or reduce a negative feeling? Great brands accomplish both.
- What is one way I can show people how to think about my business?
5. When is the moment your customer realizes they need you?
I like to ask my customers “What was happening in your life that led you to my website?” It is a thought-provoking question that almost always generates valuable insight. You’re in business to solve problems. By understanding your customer’s pain-point, you can target your marketing so that they can easily find you when they need you the most.
- What is happening in your customer’s life that leads them to you?
- What is one way you can make your business more visible to your customer when they need you the most?
- What is one way you can reduce your customer’s pain before selling them anything?
6. Does your product, logo, and marketing material look relevant?
As I’ve said before, your brand is not just how you look. However, how you look matters more than you probably think. The point is not to look “cool”. I couldn’t care less about that. The goal is for your visual elements to compliment and communicate your value. If that happens to be on trend, great. If not, don’t worry because the current trends will be gone in weeks.
- Is your logo unique enough to be noticed, and simple enough to be remembered?
- Do your colors generate the intended emotional response?
- Are your fonts large enough to read with ease?
7. Does your brand have a voice that customers can recognize?
Every time you communicate as a business, you are using a “voice”. You can think of your voice as the style in which you communicate. Are you using a voice that is recognizable? Would your customers know it’s you if your blog posts, emails, and social media updates didn’t include your name?
- What 3 attributes best describe your brand’s voice?
- Do these 3 attributes align with your Unique Selling Proposition?
- If your brand’s voice was spoken by a human, what would that person be like? Male or female? Funny or stern? Intellectual or crude?
8. Are your core values in line with your success?
Your values are of huge importance to your brand. What you stand for will determine what you do. A beautiful thing happens when your values are aligned with your behavior and your customer’s happiness. When your values don’t align with your behavior, burnout is right around the corner.
- What are your values? If you haven’t identified them, you are probably violating them.
- Are your actions in line with your values? Look at your to-do list and ask yourself: Will these actions make me feel better or worse about my business?
- What incongruent behavior do you need to stop doing immediately?
9. Who is the hero of your brand?
Our businesses are like a story unfolding day by day. Let me ask you: What role does your brand play in this grand story? Is it the hero? The villain? The mentor? I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but your brand is not the hero in this story. Your customer is the true hero in the story. Your purpose is to support your customer, the hero, and guide them through their journey.
- What’s one way you can redirect the spotlight from you to your customer?
- What does it mean for your customers to achieve success?
- Is your website mostly about you, or is it mostly about your customer?
10. What is your vision for the future of your business?
One of my favorite quotes from the Bible is “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Your vision for the future is the lifeblood of your brand. If your memory of the past is greater than your vision for the future, the end is near. Don’t keep your plans secret. Bring your customers into your vision. It’ll create purpose and belonging.
- What is your grand vision for your brand?
- What is one way you can begin sharing your vision with your community?
- How can you include your customer in your vision?
Cheers To A Better Brand
Phew! This was a long one! If you are still reading this, then you are obviously serious about reviving your brand. Remember, the grass is not greener on the other side. It’s greener where you water it. So I urge you to dig in to your brand and make it the business you and your customers deserve.