Branding is one of the most important parts of launching a successful startup. Whether B2B or B2C, a powerful brand strategy lays the foundation and gives you a leg up in competitive markets. However, branding can be an afterthought for busy entrepreneurs and founders.
Why is branding important?
Your brand is all about user experience. Staying true to your branding strategy gives your target audience a consistent user experience that build brand loyalty. Branding also serves as your promise to customers. It tells customers what to expect when it comes to your products and/or services.
What message do you want your startup to send? Is your branding about innovation and trendsetting? Or maybe you want to portray your brand as experienced, authoritative in your industry? Having a powerful branding strategy helps you answer these questions.
Your branding also includes answering the important questions your target audience has. What are their problems and pain points, and how does your product and/or service solve these problems and help customers overcome those pain points?
You can already see that branding plays a major role in how your startup will be perceived in the marketplace. This makes having clear branding vital from launch to venture capitalist investment.
What is your brand strategy?
Before you design a logo, which serves as your most important brand asset, you need to have a brand strategy in place. Your startup’s brand strategy includes:
- How do you plan on delivering your brand messages?
- What will your brand messages be?
- When and where will you deliver your brand messages?
- Who will you deliver your brand messages to?
Finding the answer to the above questions assists you in developing a powerful brand message. This includes the advertising and social channels you plan on using.
For example, if your brand solves a common women’s issue, Pinterest would be an excellent platform to deliver your brand messages on, since over 80 percent of Pinterest users are female.
Having a powerful brand strategy ultimately leads to powerful brand equity. This equity is what positions your products and/or services in the marketplace, giving you the opportunity to get more revenue.
For instance, the strong brand equity of Nike allows them to charge more for their products, and customers are willing to pay higher prices. This leads to the next essential element of startup success, defining your brand.
How to define your startup brand
To define your brand, you’ll need to do a bit of startup soul searching. This is not an easy endeavor, but very important. Don’t rush this process, because branding is a vital aspect of how your startup will grow and ultimately have success.
A few important questions to ask when defining your brand include:
- What is your startup’s mission and aim?
- What is your value proposition?
- Are there any perceptions of your startup now, and are they positive?
- Who is your target audience, where do they live, and what are their interests?
- What are your startup’s strongest qualities?
It is essential to understand the needs or demands your target audience has in order to define and position your brand effectively against your competitors. Competitor research is an important way to pull data to make defining your brand easier. One major way to set your brand apart from competitors is your logo.
It’s all about your logo
The most important asset your branding strategy has is the logo. It is the foundation of all your future branding and the aesthetic centerpiece your startups target audience will remember.
Think about all those memorable logos you see from afar and know instantly what brand they represent. This should be the aim of your startup’s logo. However, creating a logo on your own can be time-consuming and challenging.
Make your logo resonate with consumers
The good news is that it doesn’t need to be. Online logo maker platforms can make the logo design process easy. You can choose icons, colors, font, and much more when using a professional and affordable logo design platform.
Your logo should also have your brand message and mission incorporated into the design. This may take a little tweaking to get perfect, so don’t rush the logo design process. One of the best ways to create the most powerful logo is to put yourself in your target audiences’ shoes.
What image, color, icon, font, etc., will really resonate with your new and returning customers? For instance, if your startup solves a problem for women, you could use softer colors that women like.
Go to the mall and see what colors and fonts are on apparel in women-centric stores. Fashion marketers spend millions a year in research, so use what they have come up with for your target audience demographic.
How powerful is your startup’s branding?
Branding is certainly important. To ensure growth and success of your startup, be sure to make developing a powerful brand strategy a top priority. It may seem time-consuming, but it is easier to get branding right the first time than to rebrand down the road. Do you have any branding tips?