Everyone has a brand. Even if you don't actively brand yourself, others do it constantly. The ideas, values and labels others give to you, as well as the image they have of you and your business can have a great effect in your blog traffic, sales, getting clients or getting a job, and more.
Branding, in its essence, is communication. Communicating your value and motivations helps you with succeeding in your own terms.
Don't let other people to dictate your success, what feels meaningful for you and what you stand for. Take control of your brand, and clarify it with these simple steps.
1. Understand your reasons and motivations
Why do you do what you do?
This is the most important question in branding. If you can answer this question, you are already ahead of many other people, businesses and brands.
First of all, knowing your reasons and motivations behind what you do gives you clarity. It helps you to understand why your business exists and why you have chosen this particular field. You may have multiple motivations, and there are no right or wrong reasons to do what you do. Well, at least if you don't hurt anyone while doing it.
When you understand your reasons and motivations, you can also clearly describe them others. People want to know why you do what you do. It makes them feel they understand you and sympathise, or even empathise with you.
It can help clients, customers, audience members and even other people to create an emotional connection with your brand. Emotions are a significant ingredient in making sales, influencing and creating interest.
Your reasons and motivations can set you apart from your competition and other people, businesses and brands. When you can honestly describe why you do what you do, it immediately distinguishes you from others.
Additionally, understanding your why is very motivating. I have noticed that after I understood that I want to do meaningful things, it has given me a whole new motivation in building my online presence, blogging, creating products and programs and my overall branding.
2. Set your values
Your values are closely related to your motivations. They can build from each other.
Values define the moral code of your brand. They tell people what to expect from you, as well as what you stand for. Often people are known the best for their values.
Your values, just like your reasons and motivations, have a great way to set you apart from your competition and others.
Don't copy the values of other people, businesses or brands. Be honest and authentic, and dig deep in your values.
3. Know your audience
Your audience, clients and customers are also an important part of your brand. In order to clarify your brand, you need to be able to understand who you are trying to reach.
A popular practice is to create an ideal client profile. However, ideal clients are generally fictional. So if you do an ideal client profile, at least base it in a real person or real people.
Preferably, go beyond ideal client. In case you have existing audience, clients and customers, research them. Study also your competition's audience, clients and customers. And research real people who you would like to become members of your audience, your clients and customers.
Figure out who these people are, what they do, why they do it, what are their greatest successes, and what are their greatest challenges, problems and questions.
4. Analyse the value you create
When you do something meaningful, you create value. This value is often known as a product. When you have a business or brand, you offer some sort of a product.
A product can mean many different things. A product can be anything, including but not limited to an actual physical product, digital product, service or idea. A product can be a solution, it can be entertainment, or it can be a lifestyle.
What sort of problems do you, your business and brand solve to your audience, clients and customers? What sort of value do you create to them? How do your products aid with solving the problems of your audience and how does it create value for them?
Your product must be aligned with your motivations and values, as well as the needs and wants of your audience, clients and customers.
Preferably ask your audience, clients and customers what sort of value you have been creating to them, rather than just making guesses. Pay attention to repeating themes and words.
Try to be critical with this analysis, but don't get stuck with it. Be serious about it and then move on.
Simplifying tends to be the best way to solve problems and find clarity.
When you have done the other steps of clarifying your brand, find out how you can simplify your processes, products, blog, and anything else.
For example, do you have too many different services? People like simplicity, and not having to make complicated choices. When you offer them too many different service choices, you overwhelm them. See if you can remove some of your extra services or combine some of them.
I recently dropped my tailored service packages to one, Private VIP Consulting & Business Coaching. It combines my different services and can be tailored to fit many different needs. This simplifies the choice for my clients, because they cannot choose between different packages and become confused with my offerings.
Simplifying also helps people to understand what you offer and how you can create value for them.
I would love to help with clarifying your brand. My aforementioned consulting and coaching is, amongst other things, great way to find clarity in your brand and business.
If you are more of a DIY kind of a person, or not just ready to jump into tailored consulting and coaching, I also offer an affordable workbook to help you with clarifying your brand and business. Creative Business Strategy helps you to find clarity and plan your business in an uncomplicated, fun and creative way.