INSIGHT : The importance of building a brand

We see a lot of small businesses that have great products on the shelves, but a less clear idea of who they are as a brand and what they stand for in the long-run. We believe a strong brand identity is not only what drives sales but it’s also what keeps a business running smoothly and evolving in the right fashion. By working out what drives a brand, what their ethos, message and goals are, we can ascertain who their target audience is and where they will sit best in the market.

It can be easy to skip ahead and go straight to the production stage of your business, but by taking it back a step to figure out your brand values, visual identity and audience, you’ll find it will push things forward positively for your business as a whole. We’ve come up with four points on why building a strong brand identity is so important.

(Photos from Plenaire - a company who’s brand identity is clear even in pre-launch stage)

1. Your values make you stand out

Your brand’s ethos should be apparent in everything you do. Whether that’s food made using environmentally conscious production methods or a beauty line that aims to boost the self-esteem of young people, these beliefs should be at the forefront of all your business decisions. Take Glossier, for example, it’s not just the skincare and makeup we want to purchase, it’s the community and lifestyle that the brand champions that we want to support too. If you aren’t yet sure of your company ethos, make a list of all the reasons why you began, this will help to bring out your brand ambitions, whether you knew them or not! By staying true to these brand values it will be easier to develop a visual identity and know what opportunities to take.

2. Customer loyalty is priceless

Knowing your customers believe in what you believe, and support your brand and its goals, is a huge morale boost. You could be in the competitive realm of fashion, but you know what you bring to the table is different thanks to your unique ambition, established brand and loyal customers, creating your own niche in the market. Respect your audience by being transparent and authentic in your business and you’ll have not just one-off customers, but faithful friends, fans, and most importantly, trust.

3. Your business can develop more efficiently

With your strong brand and your loyal customers supporting you, you are in a much better position to grow your business - so long as you do so authentically and with your brand message at the heart of your decisions. Perhaps you want to open another cafe in another city? You’re already at an advantage compared to the other new cafes in town thanks to your reputable brand and faithful customer base spreading the word. With their endorsement behind you, you’ll have fans before you’ve even opened the doors!

4. You can create a lasting impact

Our favourite brands are the ones that we want to support and share with friends and family, rather than just buy a product from. The latter is, of course, important, but without a brand identity we believe in, we’d be much less likely to keep shopping there. If you can create a brand that holds strong beliefs, a clear visual identity and a thoughtful relationship with your customer base, you will do more than just sell products, you will create a real positive impact on people’s lives and keep them coming back for more.

Using your company values as a springboard, you can develop a strong visual identity, an attractive social presence, develop a loyal customer base and create lasting, positive change with your business. With a strong brand, the world is your oyster!

If you’d like to explore more of what it means to build your brand, we’re hosting our very first ‘How to Build your Brand’ retreat in Forest Row this September. You can find out more here.

Weekend:IN creates innovative ideas to help IN:dependent and IN:spiring brands connect, engage and grow their audiences. We help brands with social media marketingauthentic influencer marketing campaigns, and event organisation. Weekend:IN are based in Bristol, but currently work with independent and inspiring businesses across the South West and in London.

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