4 Key Elements to Discovering Your Brand Personality

4 Key Elements to Discovering Your Brand Personality

Defining your brand is the first step to building your marketing and a marketing plan that works. Your brand is the personality of your business.  If you don’t know who you are – how can your ideal clients or customers possibly find you? It also helps you to connect with your clients and customers and show them why they should choose you over your competitors.

Your brand helps you to decide what activities suit you and more importantly, your clients best and helps you to craft messages that will resonate and connect with your ideal audience.

Defining your brand is also important if you have more than yourself working in your business, or if you outsource some services.  A clearly defined brand is easier to execute and will ensure consistency in all your interactions with clients and suppliers.

So how do you go about discovering what your brand is?  Many people start – and often finish – with the visual aspects of a brand. You design your logo, choose your colours and then apply it to all the visual aspects of your business.  However, brand goes much deeper than the visual elements. It is in every interaction you have with your clients, your suppliers, your staff (if you have them) and your potential clients.

There are 4 key elements to discovering your brand – and each of them is connected to your ‘Why?’ – the reason you do what you do. Let’s break them down and see how they feed into your brand personality.

1.  Your Vision

What is the big picture for your business?  If you haven’t yet sat down and really refined your vision – now is the perfect time to start!  Ask yourself – why do you do what you do? What is the driving force behind your business? What problem are you solving?  What difference are you making in the world, or for your clients? If you’re struggling with figuring out your vision – check out Simon Sinek’s Start with Why”

Once you have your vision – hang on to it!  This is your touchstone – what you keep coming back to you as you make decisions about your business and your marketing – it should guide most of your decision making.

2.  Your Unique Value  

Why you and not your competitors?  Why are your clients choosing you and your product or service?  Think back to your vision and your ‘Why?’ this should help point you in the right direction as to why clients choose you over others.  Think particularly about what problem you are solving for your clients – this should help you define what is unique about your business and the value you provide.  Or better yet – why not ask your clients why they chose you? This is a great way to find out what value you provide to your clients – it might even be something different to what you imagine.

So now you know why you do what you do and what value you provide – you need to bring your brand to life – and we do this through your brand voice and the visual elements.

3.   Your Brand Voice

This is really important as your brand voice will guide the language you use when talking with clients, your tone and the key messages you deliver.  It will run through every interaction you and your staff have with your clients. A good way to discover your brand voice is to think about who your ideal client is – how do they speak?  Do they use technical language? Is humour important? Consider also your vision and your why – if you’re addressing a serious issue, humour may not be appropriate. You can also consider how you want your client to feel when they deal with you.  Do you want your clients to feel cared for and important – then a warm gentle tone may be appropriate. Do you want your clients to feel energised and invigorated? Then an energetic, fun and louder voice might be right for you.

4.  Your Visual Identity

The final element to discovering your brand personality is your visual identity.  What does your brand look like? Look back over your vision, unique value and your brand voice and think about what that looks like visually.  Is a clean, uncluttered, natural look or bright, vibrant and fun?  If your voice is calming and caring – bright, primary colours may not match those. If your vision is based on inspiring trust and solidity – then a whacky, fun font with cartoon-like imagery won’t be a good match.  A great way to get a feel for what your visual identity could look like is to check out visual platforms like Pinterest and Instagram or online image libraries (Pixabay and Unsplash are two of my favourites) for images which resonate with you and reflect your vision, value and voice.

As you work through these elements – be sure to write them down – or record them in some way – then share them with those who are working with you on, or in your business.

The key to a great brand is consistency – once you’ve discovered your brand personality – look at every aspect of your business and make sure it reflects this personality.  Only then will you start to create meaningful connections with your clients.

Consistency  Connection  Clients

5 Steps To A One Page Marketing Plan

5 Steps To A One Page Marketing Plan

I’m a fan of simplicity.  To me, the best marketing strategy is one that can fit onto one page. A one-pager is easy to reference day-to-day while you’re running your business. I created this video to show my 5 steps to a concise, simple one-page marketing plan – I hope you find it helpful!

 

Prefer to read the blog?  Here you go!

Step 1:  Who are you?

Your brand is the personality of your business.  It tells your customers what you do and why you do it.  

Do you have a clear vision of your brand?  Do you know the unique value you provide?

Before you can market, you need to understand your brand.  Think about the fundamental / core attributes of the work you do: Your vision, mission, values and purpose.

This will help to define your unique voice and your visual identity.

Step 2:  Who are your ideal customers?

This is almost more important than understanding your own brand.

At the heart, marketing is about connecting with your customers and showing them how you can solve their problem. Marketing is pointless if you don’t know who your ideal customer is.

Who are your existing customers?  Who is your ideal customer? What qualities do your existing and ideal customers have in common? How are they different?  Is what you offer really aligning with your existing customers needs?

Step 3:  What are their pain-points?

Pain-points are problems that your potential clients need help with or challenges they face.  Know and understand these pain-points. This will inform your service offerings as well as your marketing plan.

Are they trying to become more environmentally sustainable but don’t know how?  Do they need more customers through their door? Are they stuck on increasing awareness of their products?

Your focus is on your customer.  Not solely on what YOU have to sell THEM. What answers do you provide to solve the problems they are facing?

Step 4:  What are your key messages?

You know your brand. You know your ideal customer persona. You know the problems you can solve for them.

Now you can craft your key messages that will connect you with the right clients.

A key message is the essence of what you want your marketing to communicate.   It communicates your brand’s values and attributes. It also should explain how you can solve their problem in a succinct way.   

Two or three key messages is a great start.  Think about how you help your existing clients.  Go through reviews or testimonials you received.

Remember you’re not trying to be everything to everyone!  You are building trust and connection first.

Step 5:  How to communicate the message?

The previous steps combine to create the foundation of your marketing plan. Step 5 is figuring out how you want to share your message.  And it will lead you to more concrete marketing efforts. 

Ask yourself the following questions. And remember, keep a simple and high level view!  Nitty gritty details come later.

What format will your message take? Online or offline? Blogging or podcasting?  Email marketing or social media? Networking or speaking engagements? Conferences or consultations? 

Think about where your ideal customer is hanging out and how to reach them. 

Also consider how much time and effort are you able to allocate every week toward marketing your business?  Is support an option? What are you comfortable with doing on an ongoing basis?

And finally, what are the ways in which you can provide your ideal customer valuable content that they really find helpful?

Commit the plan to the page

While there are so many more steps that I could tie into this exercise, this will help to form the basis of what becomes a more comprehensive plan that you can review, revise and build on.  

Consistency, Connection, Clients.