Branding your business is a marketing term that quite simply defines or identifys your company with a set of shared values. Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks Coffee empire adds that “your company needs to make and emotional connection with people outside of your product”. In his case, the definition refers to outside his coffee.
The needs and desires of your customers are what drive your company’s growth. Finding the answers to those questions requires a purposeful plan and exercise. A good business owner or manager has an awareness to customer comments, trends and spending habits but a dedicated and timely effort to secure those answers lends more support to your analysis and conclusions.
The one constant expectation customers will seek until they find it is integrity. Nothing will sink your business faster that a reputation for lacking integrity when dealing with customers, vendors or employees. Consequently the best foundation for branding your company to start with is your reputation for integrity.
Once you have determined what wording best defines the essence of your company’s values, you can write a “mission statement” that further defines your company from an overall standpoint. Incorporating the values of your branding values, you can readily remind yourself, your employees, your customers and vendors of what you stand for in the marketplace.
If you need a good reference to start your thinking process for this exercise, read the Gospels and note how Jesus branded his company. As you read His life story, you will see the Godly principles he operated in all the time. History will repeat for you as it did for Jesus in that you will not be able to please everyone as hard as you may try. But each and every day that reality will give you a chance to build the character and brand of not only your company but you too. Afterall, the company is you just as Jesus was and is the church.
When you have your branding identified and your mission statement written, be sure and write it so that all your company can read it, understand it and run with it. That document can become a constant reminder for all involved in your operation that your branding value (reputation) is only as good as your actions. This platform for your company’s business behavior can be a very effective evangelistic tool. So go, spread the Gospel, and only use words if you have to!
Rich Forster KBJ Publisher