Big Business has a great brand.

When you look at the big corporations, you notice them wherever you see them. You instantly recognize them. Online, offline, product, office, communication, or whatever piece of that business you come into contact with, they look the same. They have the same logo, colors, phrases, and style across the board.

All of that is called the brand.

What is a brand?

A brand is the walking embodiment of a business. It’s what makes you instantly known to the customer. Branding refers to the symbols and style that a business uses. It creates immediate recognition, an emotional connection, and a sense of identity for the business.  And it communicates your business’ vision, value and position to the customer as quickly as possible.

Brands use colors, fonts, logos, taglines, phrases, even a certain style. The brand is the first thing your customer sees. So it should be immediately recognizable. It should be memorable. And it should bring to mind the unique characteristics of your business right away.

What is a brand for?

The purpose of branding is to show the value, vision and position of your business to your customer. When your potential client sees something from your business, they should instantly know who you are, what you do and they should feel good about your business.

Your business vision is what makes your business unique —  so the branding needs to stand out. The value is what you offer.  Every point of contact should tell your customer everything you want to be known for. And the position is your promise to your customer. So your branding will build that community and connect emotionally with them.

Because a brand is meant to be taken in at a glance, every piece needs to be as packed with meaning as possible.

How do you make a brand?

The key to good branding is to make it simple, memorable and consistent across mediums. No matter where you put it, you should be able to recognize it instantly.

The idea with branding is to forge an instant connection with your potential customer. When they see your brand, they should know exactly who you are, what you do, and why they like you, in the first few moments.

You will use color, font, style, images and content to create your brand. Choosing those is the fun part of designing your business, but don’t just pick whatever you like.  The elements of your brand will say something to your audience. Make sure they say what you want them to say.

Where do you use a brand?

Everywhere. You’ll put your branding on every single point of contact for your customer. It should be part of your website header, on your Facebook page, and on your Twitter profile. You’ll put it on the top of every email and newsletter and flyer you send.  Your brand will make your business card, invoice, or advertising you have consistent. Even on any signage you use, whether it be a small sign on your home office, storefront, vendor booth, or car magnet, you’ll have your brand all over it.

Branding is important for any business.

It helps you stay consistent across platforms, construct community and connection with your potential customers, and generate instant recognition no matter where they see you. With a good brand, you can tell your customers who you are, what you can offer them, and how you will help them.  You’ll do it quickly, easily and without having to actually use words to do it. And you will attract more customers, and make it easy for them to share you with their friends. Branding is an essential part of marketing.

Branding 101: What is a brand and why do you need it?
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