A brand helps you connect with your audience on an emotional level. The point is to make your audience feel good when they become your clients. According to Harvard Business School professor Gerald Zaltman, 95% of our purchasing decisions are made subconsciously. This means that it is the intuitive side of your audience that makes the final purchasing decision, and then the logical side justifies the purchase.
So… if your clients are buying because of an intuitive connection, it’s probably better to attract them with emotions over logic. This is where having a brand can really help you because your brand can start creating those emotions and interacting with your audience’s subconscious from their first-ever touchpoint with you.
Whether that is a post on social media, a lead magnet found online, or a comment you made somewhere. All of these are part of your brand and you want your audience to connect with you, on a subconscious level.
Aside from the basic emotional connection, here are seven other reasons why creating a brand for your business will help you…
Brand recognition means that an audience can correctly identify the brand of a specific service or product based on its basic appearance. This can include a logo, colour palette, typography, tagline, wording, location, sound (for all of you podcast and video makers), marketing, and so much more. That little jingle at the beginning of every podcast episode is part of your brand.
And once your audience hears it enough times (or sees your colours, or recognizes your language) their subconscious will automatically make the connection to your brand. The subconscious will make them buy, but then the logic part will come in and will tell them why they are buying from you.
We’ve all heard people talking about your ideal client, core client, business personas, and so many other terms which basically refer to the person you want to buy from you. These are the audience you want to attract (target audience) within your specific niche (what makes you different) so that they buy from you (clients). And you want to know who they are. The more refined your brand strategy is (and the longer it’s running), the more information you will learn about your ideal client.
When you know who they are, you can modify your brand strategy to suit them specifically, so that your messages resonate with them, your values connect with them, and your brand tickles their subconscious to buy from you. This is done by connecting to your audience on a more personal level.
A part of your brand that not many people talk about (when talking about branding) is social proof. This is huge in marketing and everybody and their grandma is going to tell you that having social proof helps you get more clients. But that is also part of your brand because, as I’ve said multiple times, a brand touches on every part of your business.
In order to build trust in your audience, you want them to know that you can be trusted. The easiest way to do that is with social proof. And this social proof wouldn’t be your portfolio of cool pictures, it will be the feelings your clients had when they worked with you. Social proof talks less about you and more about your brand, the comforting/supportive/encouraging feeling you give your clients.
This is the value that you provide with your services! And the more social proof you have (more, in this case, being more quality social proof and testimonials, not a hundred great job messages) the more likely are your audience to interact with you and your brand.
Going back to the emotions for a moment, people are more likely to purchase from a brand that connects with them on a personal level and is legitimate – something they can trust. And, by the way, the best social proof of your work is yourself. If you are spending time working on your own brand and business, then you are showing your clients that you will be spending time on them.
I can talk about brand value forever, so I am going to spare you the full rant and share my previously written article on Brand values. What are your brand’s guiding principles? that talks all about that. Because your own brand values will give value to your brand. In this case, both are referring to two different things but having a strong brand will help you in so many ways!
You will find it easier to find the right clients for you that are a joy to work with (both an emotional and financial value). It will also help you with standing out against your competition so your clients find you (both emotional and financial value), and you will get a better understanding of how to deliver your content so more people know about you. And this is only the beginning!
Those points I mentioned at the end of value? They are also important to your reach. Having a strong brand reach means having a positive impression on your audience and making yourself stand out from the competition. In order to do this, you’re going to have set up multiple touchpoints for your audience to find you and all of them should be consistent (see recognition above).
The more places you are visible (in this case, yes, quantity is important but also make sure the locations are credible), the bigger your reach. The bigger your reach, the easier it will be for your audience to associate you as an industry leader. And if you are recognized as a leader, your audience will boost your reach themselves.
Marketing is a huge and very important component of your brand. Now that you know how important it is to know your audience, to niche down, and figure out your ideal client, you want to make sure that your marketing can reach them. If you don’t have a strong brand or if you don’t know who you’re reaching out to and where, then your advertising will fall flat.
Having a strong brand will influence your advertising and marketing in a lot of ways, only one of them being the appearance of your ads! Think about the content in your ads, the slogans for your services, the message you want to send across, and the values you want your audience to connect with. Think about that subconscious brain you want to interact with and how to do it.
In this case, I want to split up growth into two sections… business and personal. And this is because, as an entrepreneur, both will affect one another in different ways. Sometimes, it can be hard to draw a clear line between the two, but this is your business and your brand. And it is yours.
Having a strong brand can help you when growing your team or hiring contractors to help you out. It will help you with ensuring that the people who are working to represent your brand are doing it the same way you are. If they are not passionate about their work with you, that will translate into their work and your audience will see it. And if you already have a team working with you, having a strong brand will help keep them motivated.
You know those motivational posters that you see in offices everywhere? Think of your brand’s purpose as one of those posters, something that will push you and anybody working for you to go for that next level and continue to work on your brand. Throw in your brand mission and vision to let everybody know what you’re aiming for (contractors and audience). And sprinkle in some brand values to ensure that everybody is on the same page.
Having a brand helps you, as an individual, by building you up. You are the CEO of your business, the top chef, the one in charge, and the one that knows everything about your business. This can help so much with building your confidence and (I believe this one is more important) setting your boundaries. When you have a brand, you’re positioning yourself as a company that is available for hire, somebody who is on equal ground with your clients and knows when to say no.