The biggest mistake a brand can make is trying to do too much at once. Sometimes we get so far down the branding rabbit hole our efforts become about designing the right pens or giveaway bags. Guess what? Every time a customer or client engages with you,that’s branding. Over-thinking what branding is and how to create it leads to a convoluted message and unnecessary work.
Where companies go wrong with branding is forgetting there is a difference between “nice to have”and “want to have.”
Most brands want to be easily recognized in their communities. CRE agents want to be known as the authority in their niche. CRE service providers want to be found quickly and associated with great customer service. All brands want to be useful and deliver quality.
So what do you need to achieve those objectives?
You don’t always need to run brand awareness campaigns or spend hours strategizing about building your brand. You don’t need a massive website with hundreds of pages of content. You don’t need every social media network.
What you do need is well-defined brand values and a plan to execute those values. Those visual elements–the logo, the website color palette, the free pens–exist to help people easily recognize your brand values in the future. When someone sees the Amazon Smile logo, they have an immediate brand association: value, speedy delivery, convenience, etc. That’s all logos and giveaways do.
Think about connecting with our universal values, like:
How do you honor those values in what you do? Keep your brand purpose front and center. Everyone, from that part-time call center assistant to the CEO needs to know why you do what you do and how you do it. Never lose sight of that purpose, as it defines the intent of your company and path you’ll take moving forward.
Take the first bullet point: do your customers feel heard and recognized through your branding? How is that possible? Easy! Make your contact information super easy to find. Invite current and prospective clients to touch base with you in the messages you share–on email, on social, at face-to-face events. Send surveys asking for feedback. Respond to online comments. All that work you’d do anyway as part of building relationships–that’s also branding.
So don’t worry about designing branded swag after branded swag. Focus less on the “stuff,” and do good work every day that speaks to the brand purpose. You may find you don’t need those branded fidget spinners or an expensive brand awareness building social media campaigns. When you do need to make a big impact with your brand, the team at ATYPICAL would love to help. We help build your branding bones and elevate them with strategic insights and creativity.