How to Develop a Unique Brand for Your Small Business

  • People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.
  • Dovetailed with the creation of a professional and solid logo for your business, commissioning the creation and placement of feather flags in public spaces will draw from the larger population.
  • You are putting your brand to work for the betterment or positive development of other human beings who are a part of your community.

Building a brand for your independent business from the ground up can seem like a daunting task. However, there are tools and concepts that can come in handy. Whether it’s an attitude or an artifact, an eye-catcher, or an effective marketing idea, every entrepreneur can leverage these things to craft their message and the means of sending it. Below, we’ll explore five of these to get you on the path to success.

While brand-building is largely about the substance of your offerings and the direction in which you take your marketing, having a business logo that has been crafted by an individual trained in aesthetics is important.

Follow the Golden Circle from the Inside Out

A concept introduced by a well-known consultant that should be in every small business’s playbook is the Golden Circle. At the center is Why you do what you do. This describes your core motivation and the beliefs that drive you. The next orbit is How and describes how you offer business to the world. These are the specific actions you take to manifest your Why. The final orbit consists of What. This is your product or service.

As the consultant notes, people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. This is because many other businesses can reproduce the same offerings for the same price or better in the same way that you do. Starting with the center of the circle gives you an edge because most businesses don’t speak to that and leave it fuzzy. But if your Why is clearly defined, you can move confidently into the market with a crisp message and undeniable branding. The Golden Circle should inform your brand strategy, which precedes marketing or direct business acquisition. This is the groundwork that helps you define your voice and tell your brand story clearly to the world.

Your Professionally Designed Logo

While brand-building is largely about the substance of your offerings and the direction in which you take your marketing, having a business logo that has been crafted by an individual trained in aesthetics is important. If your logo is poorly crafted or forgettable, it will have the opposite effect you desire. Potential clients will not choose to do business with you. Hence, it’s important to partner with a graphic designer whose portfolio demonstrates a successful track record of logo building. To a certain extent, this is also part of the brand-building process–the relationships you form with members of your community—so it’s also important to ensure it’s a positive experience for all involved.

Public Space Recognition

Whether you have a storefront business accessible to the public or choose to conduct business exclusively in the virtual realm, it’s important to recognize that we still live largely in our physical environments. Placing artifacts or physical items that draw the attention of individuals in those environments anchors your brand. Dovetailed with the creation of a professional and solid logo for your business, commissioning the creation and placement of feather flags in public spaces will draw from the larger population. It is the opposite of direct marketing techniques, using a broad focus rather than a finely-honed approach.

While these flags are eye-catching, they are often perceived as more favorably than large banners or other public space marketing tools. They may be sized to fit the venue—larger for public thoroughfares, smaller for storefront walks. Companies that design these marketing tools may offer a range of options, packages, and even provide additional tools to your business. They are also a part of your community of entrepreneurs.

Integrated Community Presence

Part of your brand story, the unique narrative that sets your company apart from any competition, has to be anchored in the human community in such a way that advertisement or profit is not the primary goal. That means participating as a company in activities or initiatives that enrich the community as a whole. These efforts should be in keeping with your brand story and your Why from the first point, but they should not be seen as advertising opportunities.

You are putting your brand to work for the betterment or positive development of other human beings who are a part of your community. Individuals are more likely to utilize your service or offerings if they associate them with altruistic behaviors that are not directly self-serving. School bake sales, blood drives, book fairs, children’s athletic endeavors, after-school programs, elder care initiatives, recycling initiatives, greenspace creation for community use, and other projects are examples of this.

While there are a number of considerations to embrace when building a unique brand for your business, it’s important to focus on foundations.

Passive Brand Marketing Via Presence

While direct marketing tools and physical artifacts bearing your logo (e.g. pens, notepads, magnets, hats) are all ways to put your brand out into the world, there’s a better use of your resources. Passive brand marketing refers to how you craft your online or physical storefront presence. Utilizing professional freelance services or consulting firms for web design and User Experience (UX) will ensure that your company’s website communicates your brand to each person who encounters it in an intelligible and positive fashion.

This can be as simple as the color scheme and font selection or as complex as the literature that accompanies your online presence. The goal is not to yell about yourself to anyone who will listen but to ensure that anyone who comes in contact with your brand is pleased by the experience. You may be sure they will talk about you, whether their contact is positive or negative, so take pains to ensure their experiences are great.

While there are a number of considerations to embrace when building a unique brand for your business, it’s important to focus on foundations. Discover your brand story; define why you offer your services or goods to the world. Communicate it clearly through actions and presence in the community and ensure that experiences with your business are user or client-focused in terms of how you offer your business. By ensuring quality foundations, you ensure a memorable and positive business presence for your brand.

Featured image source: Pexels.com.

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Sierra Powell

Sierra Powell graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a major in Mass Communications and a minor in Writing. When she's not writing, she loves to cook, sew, and go hiking with her dogs.

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