What exactly is branding you may wonder? Branding is a collection of all of your marketing efforts, from graphic elements, like logos and corporate colors, to written pieces, your tagline, methodology and objective, to your interaction with clients and what you say. Your brand is the image you present to the world therefore the business value of brand consulting is something not to be looked over.
You will probably spend a lot of time creating and developing your brand, and you will want to make sure that it is instantly recognizable. Here is how.
Make Sure Your Brand is Appropriate
Whatever your brand does say about your company had better be something that you can deliver! If, for example, your brand includes the tagline “Simple solutions to complex problems” or something similar, you had better make sure that you deliver simple solutions!
People will remember your brand – the question is whether it will be a favorable memory, or whether they will remember a bad experience. Make sure you live up to your brand promises. The down side of building a brand and becoming more recognizable is that any missteps are likely to be much more visible to the public, and potential clients!
Consistency is Key
Once you have decided on your brand, you need to stick to it for a period of time. Changing a brand may be acceptable once you are an established concern, and considering changing your focus area, or upgrading your service, but if you are a new business for example a wedding consulting firm, changing your brand will create a negative impression. If you do not know what your company is about, how can your clients trust you?
This means thinking very hard about what you want your brand to say about your consulting firm. Make sure it is the right message, and that it has long-term potential – it will be around for a while!
If you want your brand to become a household name, or an industry standard, it is important to make sure that it is visible. Designing and developing your brand is pointless if you fail to use it to it’s maximum potential.
How to do that? Simple. Brand everything. Make sure that your letterheads, consulting firm’s website, business cards, flyers, proposals, and email signatures all carry your logo, are in your corporate colors, and contain your tagline. If necessary, and if you travel often, consider branding your vehicle – it will serve as a mobile advertisement.
When next you send a corporate gift to a client, have it branded! A keychain with your company’s brand engraved on it, or a pen emblazoned with your details is a great way to keep your brand in your potential client’s mind!
As you can imagine, branding is a very effective form of marketing. Large corporations spend millions on developing and improving their brands, and some of the most recognizable brands have been the same basic formats for years. By thinking carefully about your business’s goals, what you offer clients, and what you want clients to know about you, you can develop a brand that has a positive long-term effect on your company.
So think hard, choose wisely, and build a brand for your consulting practice worth emblazoning on everything!