What do you think about when you think of the term “brand”? Do you think about some of the most important business entities in the world such as McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Adidas, Apple, The Walt Disney Company? Do you think about their popular slogans or perhaps their iconic logos that provide a visual that many individuals can instantly recognize? Those elements are certainly an essential aspect of branding. Did you also know that many celebrities such as Oprah, Beyonce’, Ellen Degeneres, and David Beckham are not only famous figures but also serve as brands themselves? It is truly incredible how a business entity or a prominent figure can create an immense following and can serve as an influence to people around the world.
That is the power of branding. You probably think that there is no way you can reach the amount of popularity and reach these entities have. You are right and also wrong. Even though you may not have the reach these businesses and individuals have, that does not mean that you cannot establish a brand for yourself or your business in order to obtain an audience you wish to reach.
What is Branding?
What makes you different from the rest? What is the one aspect that you have that others may not? That is the essence of branding. If you can answer this question effectively, then you perhaps are ready to embark in a journey that will help you find success for yourself and/or your organization regarding your branding efforts. If you are perhaps finding difficulty in answering these questions, you are in luck! b.iD’s Founder, Creative Director and Branding Specialist, Dana Hewling, recently took part in an informative conversation.
Hosts Phillip Yates, Chris Phillips, and Rick Smith, were proud to welcome b.iD’s leader to their show, Equiliberty, to discuss some of the most important questions that many individuals who would like to be more in touch with their personal or organizational brands, would like to discuss. If there was one thing that any listener took away from the show, in order to have success in any branding initiative, consistency must be key. It was a word that was often repeated throughout the show, because it is vital to remain consistent in any message or strategy that you are going to establish, in order for your brand or your organization’s brand to find success.
“The word of the day is Consistency.”
How we approach branding at b.iD
We all have our definitions about what branding is. You may have your own definition of what branding is, as well as organizations that specialize in this discipline. Our very own Dana Hewling has an interesting, yet important take on what branding means to her and to b.iD. Branding “is a company, organization, or person’s heart represented visually.” A person or an organizational entity has to provide an authentic image to for audiences to be reached. Your heart represents your most authentic self, your essence. As people, we crave for someone that is honest, that is transparent, and that is inviting. An individual or an organization has to have those elements to establish some form of branding successfully.
As Dana explained to the hosts, b.iD itself presents itself in an image that captures the attention of our clients. “I’ve built my brand off of what people kept bringing up, so when people meet me, the first thing they always comment on is how small I am. So, that is why our logo is small, my business cards are tiny, so you’ll remember that the small woman gave you the small business cards, and despite the fact that they are small, they are not lacking in anything.”
Where to begin?
Sometimes many brands have difficulty in discovering how to brand themselves to the audiences they would like to reach. Dana’s initial contact with clients can tell her what really is affecting the person’s or organization’s branding efforts. The first thing she states to her clients, is “What is the one thing that you want your clients or audience to take away from your brand?” As a client explains answers this question to Dana, she can discover some of the things that client has not considered when pursuing a change in branding. Dana explains, “I know you have this problem, and it is screaming at your face, which is why you are talking to me, but you also have this problem that you haven’t paid attention to.”
“What is the one thing that you want your clients or audience to take away from your brand?”
Dana explains during the show that some clients know exactly what they would like to show to their audience regarding any branding efforts, but there are some that would want to do things that are counterproductive and may hurt their branding efforts. She explains the following: “Some people, and companies, its very specific. They know what they want. Some (companies) there are a lot of pieces to the puzzle and we can’t express every piece of the puzzle at the same time.” She further explains: “What is the one thing someone should take away because if you have 10 different pieces, what is the one thing that we want them to remember because if we tell them all 10 different pieces, in 30 seconds or however long we have to communicate with them, they are less likely to remember all 10 pieces.”
Companies and individuals who would like to capture their desired audiences through branding efforts must remember that you cannot place and do certain things at once to make people remember who you are. Audiences will not be able to understand who you are as a company or individual if your message is not consistent to one specific element. In order to obtain consistency, you can’t bombard your audiences with many ideas, messages, or attitudes about what your brand means. “I tell them one piece 10 times, they are more likely to remember that one thing, and it will stick in their minds, and that is where you get that repetition and that consistency,” she states.
“If I tell them one piece 10 times, they are more likely to remember that one thing, and it will stick in their minds, and that is where you get that repetition and that consistency.”
Remaing Revalant & Social Media.
The topic of relevance was also discussed. When it comes to the relevance of an individual or a company, and their standing in their respective markets, consistency is also crucial. “Staying relevant, it takes consistency, not necessarily doing the same thing over and over again, but keeping that similar theme. Target has switched up things, but for the most part, if I see a Target ad before I see the Target logo, I can tell you that that is a Target ad that is coming on. That consistency is what helps you stay relevant.”
Social media plays a significant role when it comes to the relevancy of an entity. “If you are on social media if you post ten times this week, and we don’t hear from you for months, are you going to remain relevant?
Three foundations to building your personal Brand
Dana and the hosts of Equiliberty conclude with three tips to anyone that would like to start branding themselves that will help their professional and entrepreneurial efforts. The first tip that she states that will help your personal branding efforts is setting up a domain. The second tip is to pick that one thing that you want people to take away. The third tip is to use social media and other related platforms that you have at your disposal to reinforce your one thing.
To listen to the full interview and get the scoop on how to improve your branding efforts, watch the full video here. If you would like a more personal, in-depth conversation on how to begin your journey to show who you are or what your organization stands for as a brand, don’t hesitate to contact b.iD.