How to Determine What Your Brand Is

branding

Developing a brand is so important to having a business. Before you can market a brand on Social Media, you first need to figure out what that brand is.

People like to be associated with brands and to buy from brands. Getting repeat customers is also much easier when you have a brand.

With your brand you can develop brand loyalty with customers and get them to love you and not only buy your products but anticipate your product.

The Power of Branding

Think of what Apple did with the iPhone or what Nike did with the Air Jordan. These brands have customers who are so loyal and hungry for their products that they will line up for hours, late night or early morning, just for the opportunity to be an early adopter of this brand’s new product.

When you go into the food store and see all the branded products, such as Coca-cola, right next to the food store’s generic brand that is significantly cheaper, why do so many people buy the more expensive branded product?

Because it’s better?

Yes, or at least that’s what many people think? Even when the generic item shows the ingredients are identical, many people will still pay more for the branded product.

The best part about all of this is that many times the brand selling the higher priced item, also manufactured the lower priced item for the food store, using the same process and ingredients.

The only different is the branding.

This is the power of a brand. To show people your brand can serve their needs better than anything else.

Even better than something that seems identical and may be cheaper.

You can do this because what people are paying for isn’t the product alone. It’s the experience.

When you start to sell the experience and not the product you start to sell a brand.

So what does it take to build a brand?

A lot of time and hard work. But before you can even think about building a brand, you first need to determine what your brand is.

What Can You Do for Your Customers?

The first question you need to ask yourself and answer is what do you have to offer and why should anyone care? You need to think of branding from the perspective of the customer, not from your perspective.

Think why you follow certain people or buy certain products. Is it because they really want you to?

No!

Is it because they are really nice? Unlikely.

It’s because they have something of value that you want. The product or service answers a question you have or solves a problem or serves a need.

The moment it stops doing that, you and everyone else is going to seek a replacement product or service that will serve that need.

Figuring out Your Brand

The first step in figuring out your brand is to make a list of every question you can answer and every problem you can solve. Literally everything.

Can you create a product that solves a problem? Take note of that.

Can you write notes better than anyone else? Put it on the list. Can you spell or edit more accurately than most? Write it down.

Are you a great bike rider, tennis player, surfer or chess player? Add that too.

There is someone out there who struggles with this and could use your help.

If you’re good at something you’re probably already helping people. Do your friends ask your advice on certain topics?

Do you have a job that has allowed you to develop a skill others might find useful? Figuring out all the things you do well is key to understanding your brand.

Once you brainstorm all of these things, look for common themes.

Pick something that you are passionate enough about that you can continue adding value to customer for years to come.

If you select something that you will get bored with quickly you won’t be able to provide the value your customers will expect and the brand will suffer as a result.

Who Are You: The Expert or The Novice?

The next step is to know where you are in terms of your knowledge on the topic and be honest with your customers about it. You don’t necessarily need to be an expert to provide value to someone else.

You just need to be a few steps ahead of the person asking the question.

Think of it this way. If I just learned how to write and publish a book, make a website or take great looking photos with a DSLR, you have something of value to share.

You can’t share it with experts because they already know these things. However, You can share it with beginners who are in the same place you were in when you were first trying to learn.

The Novice’s Advantage

Many times being one step ahead of the beginner can give you an advantage because you can relate to their needs more than someone who is so far removed from being a beginner that they can’t remember what it feels like to start from scratch.

The beginner may also feel that they want to learn from someone who just learned how to do something successful because they can relate to that person more than the expert.

The Expert’s Advantage

Where the expert has the advantage is when it comes to showing value to those more experienced. When you’re an expert you can teach almost anyone.

You can teach beginners because you certainly know more than them. Some beginners may prefer someone with deep knowledge because the expert also knows what traps lie ahead and what the novice should avoid.

They also are a resource that can be utilized much longer.

Learning from someone who is not that far a head of you has it limitation in that this person can only teach you what they have learned, which at this point may not be much.

Once the knowledge gap between student and teacher is filled the student needs to move on to a more advanced teacher.

However, if the student starts out with an expert teacher, they can progress with that same teacher for years before they need to move on and find a more experience teachers.

This means more consistent revenue from those customers and less time and money spent trying to acquire a new customer.

All this is to say, everyone has something to offer, you just need to get clear about what that is and who would want it.

Finding Your Audience

Figuring out the “who would want it” part of branding is key.

Regardless of the product, how amazing it is or how knowledgeable you are, it isn’t right for everyone but it is right for someone.

If you have the best juicer in the world but I hate juice, trying to market it to me is a waste of time.

If you’re my next door neighbor and you figured out how to get your dog to stop peeing in the house and I have the same problem you have caught my attention.

If I also find out you wrote a book about how you got your dog to stop peeing in the house I’m going to buy that book because it serves my immediate need. I don’t care if you’re a bestselling author or not.

The key is finding the audience who has the problem you have a solution for and getting in front of them.

Think of the type of person who might want your product. How old are they? Where do they live? How much money do they make? What profession do they have? What other activities are they a part of?

Use this information to design a profile of your ideal customer so you can have a targeted marketing campaign.

As the old saying goes, if you’re marketing to everyone, you’re marketing to no one.

The Creation Begins

Once you have figured all of this out you can create your brand and begin to market it.

You know what you have to offer, you know who you will be presenting yourself and your brand as, and you know who wants what you have to sell.

The next step is figuring out how to get in front of your customer and keep them engaged.

If you’re blogging or thinking about blogging as a way to get you brand out to the world and build likability and trust with your audience check out this free guide on The Anatomy of a Perfect Blog Post by my friends at Elite Marketing Pro.

Cheers and Happy Marketing,

Michael