Brand is a fancy word for experience
I am going to let you in on a little secret–brand is not about how it looks, it’s how it feels. No matter how small you think your business is your brand can speak volumes! It is the story you set out to tell, how your business will grow, and the solution you are offering. Stand behind what your business is here to do and your brand will take you places you didn’t think possible! But because it is a bit daunting of how to put your brand to work for you or to predict what your business growth will look like here are 5 steps to get you on the right path:
Step #1: Define why your business exists–If you don’t know WHY you wake up everyday stoked to get into your studio and create how will you know where your business is and where you are going? The WHY your business exists is the VALUE you put into your work and the value it gives back to you.
Step #2: Go for passion– Simple enough really, passion is where it’s at. You are going to experience ebbs and flows with any business you enter into so make sure you LOVE what you are doing. If you are talented at something but the thought of reproducing this something or spending all day around it sounds awful or just mundane don’t make it a business! Passionate brands shine through and you know when a business LOVES their work.
Step #3: Ask yourself, “What am I really offering?”– What you offer is how your brand stands on it’s own. You might be a collage artist, or a textile designer but I don’t think what you are really offering is collage art or textiles–I think what you are REALLY offering is a rich history because you are an expert in your medium and I think you are offering a connection to the story of why you create. If you are a kids t-shirt company I think you are offering a place for kids imagination to be inspired. What are you really offering through your work?
Step #4: Narrow your niche and dig deep– Pick that ONE creative idea you could work on everyday for the next twenty years. I promise you that there is plenty of direction in that one idea. When you choose your niche don’t be afraid to really nit pick and define EXACTLY what that is and how it will look. Then learn everything there is to know about your industry–find out what already exists, decide what angle you want to offer, and become the expert! Being an expert in your niche is branding at it’s best.
Step #5: Solve a problem– Unique simply doesn’t cut it anymore. Your business idea and products might be the most unique thing in the market today and I still guarantee someone else is already doing it. It’s inevitable–but that’s ok! We are not going to focus on unique– instead we are going to focus on solutions. This is what successful brands do, they solve a problem their consumers already struggle with. (Whether they know it or not!)
Here are your three steps to finding a product solution:
- Find the problem you see in the demographic you want to serve most
- Define the solution to that problem
- Find the product that best creates that solution