Traditional branding is like a secret club with its elitist jargon.Words like strategy and research, competitive advantage, analysing target markets, creating key messages, sales funnels and channels… blah blah blah.
Brand strategy is all so serious and dry. Maybe it should be renamed BLanding (haha that’s a little joke).
But seriously, the word itself “BRANDING,” is enough to throw ANYONE into a spin of confusion – and that includes marketing and creative professionals themselves.
Don’t let the unexciting language of branding put you off.
The traditional language around branding is just a hangover from the old patriarchal stuffy business models that have been specifically designed to confuse and disorientate us so an elite group of “brand strategists” can appear to be the “experts”.
All you need is a guide that speaks your language. Someone who inspires you and empowers you to be the leader of your own brand.
The truth is, as any brand strategist knows, everything needed to create a brilliant brand comes directly from you. It is merely the job of the strategist to draw that out of you.
Branding is happening with or without you.
Branding is happening in your business whether you realise it or not. Having a powerful and well-defined method behind that branding is the secret ingredient ALL successful brands know about.
A lot of what branding is, happens without you because branding is not who you say you are, but what others say you are – a brand can only exist from other peoples’ perspective. As the founder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos famously said:
“Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.”
The potency of branding.
Branding has enormous power which can have a negative or positive effect. Branding can influence and shape how others see you. Branding has the potential to transform one person’s life; or to reach millions of people all over the world; or it even has the capacity to shape entire cultures.
Hi, I’m Kymba, I am a soul seeker, storyteller, illustrator, designer… oh and a “soulful” branding consultant.
The truth is: I love branding. It enables me to be incredibly effective in the work I do. The very structured nature of branding, allows me to be even more dynamic, creative, and soulful with the Soulful Branding programs I run. Branding is a sophisticated discipline that offers some clearly defined limits, which in turn provides limitless opportunity for self and business expression.
Small business owners and entrepreneurs would benefit immensely if they used even a few simple branding techniques. Branding is a process that puts a structure in place to reliably act on new ideas, unlock creativity and enable the innovation needed to grow a flourishing brand.
So what is branding exactly?
Branding covers all of the interactions we have with a business, service, or product. As Seth Godin so eloquently puts it:
“Every interaction, in any form, is branding.”
Branding is your customers’ experience of you, the feeling they get when they interact with your brand in any way.
Branding embraces what it is that makes you different. It focuses on the most memorable and fascinating aspects of your business, the things that people will remember most about you.
For example, if you came up with a simple, thoughtful idea… let’s say, you gave a bar of chocolate to every new client. Straight away, you are creating a point of difference. This is a small way you are starting to build your brand. With this example, you may find that a new customer is likely to mention this chocolate to someone else. Giving a client or customer a reason to talk about you is always a good idea.
Putting thought into your brand interactions will contribute to influencing the hearts and minds of others. The secret is to accentuate what you are already doing so these actions are a natural extension of who you really are. The bar of chocolate is a simple act that plants a particular seed in a new customer’s mind, one that becomes meaningful and communicates something about who you are to them.
With these changing times, branding has an opportunity to reinvent itself. Because if it doesn’t, it may be in danger of appearing antiquated and limiting with its current scope and perspective.
I feel that some of the most inspiring people in business are alienated from the power branding offers. There are so many branding techniques that could enable struggling small businesses to really get off the ground and fly.
If we don’t rejuvenate the world of “branding”, then we may lose the attention of the very people who would most benefit from the power of branding.
It is often the small to medium sized businesses that struggle to be seen and heard as they flow along with the flock and trends – doing their best, but, without branding, they remain just a business. Not a brand.
Perhaps it’s because branding feels out of our control – it is so vast and infinite and “boundless” – that the language around branding has become so formal and structured.
Is branding too sophisticated?
Is branding too sophisticated to a point where it is a challenge to understand and implement? Entrepreneurs and small business people are often without the luxury of having their own branding consultant. So how do we create a branding process that is simple, effective, and accessible to every business?
There is an opportunity here to create a new way to “do” branding. One that is easy and can be developed over time.
Find a branding guide.
We need more guides for small business people and entrepreneurs to navigate the world of branding. To help us apply simple branding techniques, that are fun, powerful, and creative. More natural processes that can be integrated into the day to day running of a business. I hope my approach to branding does just that.
We all crave a more inspiring new evolution of branding because we are at a time when we are seeking a new way. Together, we can create a new, more soulful approach to the branding landscape: one that allows rising brands to best articulate themselves and be the greatest expressions of themselves as they grow and go on to be a loved brand that makes a difference.