Branding can be scary and getting started can be even scarier, so I want to talk about three different types of brands and give you a nudge in the right direction. Firstly, though, I do want to clarify one thing. Even if you already have a brand, if you are at a stage where you want to grow your business, then knowing how you want to grow your brand can definitely help you out.
For example, if you want to hire more people and pull yourself away as the face of your brand, maybe focusing the rest of your brand strategy on your vision will give you a clearer direction on how to do that. If you want to turn your side-gig into a full-time job and make your face the face of your services, maybe focusing on building a personal brand is best for you. And if you’re all about your audience and want to make your entire brand focused on them so they love it, then a business brand is probably the way to go.
Having said that, none of these are a must or a how it has to be done. These are examples and breakdowns of what I’ve noticed when working with my own clients and talking to other brand strategists. Without further ado… here are the three main types of brands I want you to think about.
These types of brands are perfect for any B2B business models, product-based businesses, and service providers. Technically, these types of brands work for anybody and everybody because they are based on your audience. The idea behind these brands is that everything else is built upon your audience while inputting enough of yourself to make a connection.
This is because the purpose of these brands is to connect with your audience. Whether that is through identifying with them and being part of the same club, or letting them know that your brand was made specifically to help them. Or anything in between. The most important thing here is building that connection on a subconscious level. And, considering that we want to be seen as unique and different, your brand’s job is to acknowledge and celebrate that uniqueness by recognizing it and empowering it.
These types of brands are perfect for coaches, artists, musicians, etc. They are based all around you as an individual with the goal of reaching as many people as possible. You are a unique individual and the purpose of these brands is to make that clear right off the bat, that this business is all about you and what you can do, that nobody else can.
The purpose of these brands is to show you are human. The human experience is important, especially when making large purchases, and knowing who you’re buying from is important. Considering the fact that authenticity, reality, and the truth are huge trends and very important for most people purchasing from a solopreneur, personal brands make that easier. As long as you are actually true to yourself and your brand. As in, make sure that it is your vision, your values, your personal opinion… not somebody else’s.
These types of brands are perfect for non-profit and humanitarian organizations or entrepreneurs who focus on growing and making an impact. They are based around the brand’s vision with the idea of growing. Think about a solopreneur who wants to grow their team through hiring and becoming a business owner with others working for them.
For business brands, the person behind the business and the audience don’t matter as much as achieving their vision. This means, adjusting your audience and history as needed to keep growing. Most commonly, goal brands focus on trends and making a global difference. Having said that, non-profit and humanitarian aren’t the only businesses that can go into this category. Think of making a global change and basically ignoring anybody that is going to get in your way to do so. Including yourself.
Now… I know this heading is misleading, but I wanted to let you know something quick about examples of these brands. Every single brand falls into more than one of these categories. The main focus for these categories is how the brand is originally built, not where it is right now. You may have started your own brand as a personal brand and only recently realized you want to focus on your audience more, or the reverse. Or any other combination.
The one thing I want you to get out of these examples is that, at the end of the day, this is your business, your baby, and your brand. There will always be something of you inside the brand. Whether that is your personal values, your individual mission, or your opinion on colours. It can be anything because you are building your brand and it is a part of you.
PS. As a side-note here, I help my clients create audience-based brands. As in, we focus on who your ideal client is and build something they will love, regardless of what your services are. If this sounds like something you want to do, reach out and let’s see if we’re a good fit.
THE FINAL TYPE
Now that you know the main three, I do want to mention that there are other types of brands. These can be referred to as corporate brands, which focus on the industry, trends, and numbers. Think of it this way… corporate brands don’t focus on the founder, the audience, or the vision. They focus on what will make money.
Think about a board of directors deciding on taking your business in a new direction because they know they will make more money, without caring about the impact this will make on your audience or your original vision. These are the types of brands that have more of a say in what your services and products are than how to market them for your ideal client.
One other thing here, be careful! All three of the other types can very easily evolve into a corporate brand. This is not always a good idea. Maybe, that is your final purpose and goal, but if not… make sure not to let numbers control your decisions. Although… these types of brands are usually powerful enough that they can switch up pretty much anything without losing too much of their audience.