An effective brand will give you a major advantage in an increasingly competitive marketplace. But what exactly does ‘branding’ mean and how does it impact on your business?
In very simple terms, your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what your customer or your prospective customer can expect from your products and services. It should also differentiate your product offering from your competitors. Your brand is derived from your business DNA, and what you want to aspire to and what people perceive you to be.
Consider the following:
• Are you innovative in your sector?
• What are your particular skills?
• Are you experienced?
• Who is your target audience?
• Is your product or service high-cost but high quality?
• Is your product or service low-cost but high value?
Start by reviewing the products and services that you wish to offer. Identify the space in the market they occupy and imagine you are looking for that product/service. Establish what appeals to you and keep it simple so that you can embody it in your brand.
Brand Building Steps
Defining your brand
In order to prepare yourself for defining your brand you will need at the very least to answer the following questions:
• What is your company’s mission? Many companies embody this in a ‘mission statement’.
• What are the particular benefits and features of your products and services that you are proving?
• If you had or about to start your business what will your customers and prospects think of your company?
• What qualities do you want them to associate with your company?
Think of a brand as a person
Every one of us is unique whose character is comprised of our beliefs, values and purpose in life. Our personality determines how we behave in various situations, how we dress and what we say to people. When building a brand, it is essential that you consider the character within it.
Repeat business is critical
A customer that believes in your values will remain loyal to your brand – repeat business is the key to success.
Stand out from the crowd
Be innovative and bold, and ensure your brand reflects this. Bigger brands are unable to change quickly to meet their customer needs. Small businesses are ‘nimble and flexible’ and can react to the ever-changing needs of customers.
You need a great logo! Test it amongst your friends within prison and your family. By the way, place it everywhere!
Write down your brand message – Establish what are the key messages you want to communicate to your customers about your brand. Every aspect of your business should encompass your brand and most importantly, so should your employees.
Integrate your brand – Branding needs to extend to every aspect of your business, including your business cards, letterhead, website etc.
Develop a slogan for your business – Try and write a memorable and concise statement that encapsulates your brand.
Design a template and brand standards across your business.
Believe in your brand – Customers will not return or refer someone else if you do not stay ‘true to your brand’.
Use your brand consistently – and be proud of your brand!
Prison is the ideal time to create your brand and associated logo. Use your colleagues in prison and the education department to test your branding and logo and establish what works and what doesn’t.
Have fun with the design of your logo!
Get your tax affairs in order pre-release
5 April 2019 marks the end of another tax year – 2018/19
Remember to contact The Tax Academy CIC to review your tax affairs in order to ensure they are up-to-date.
There is nothing worse than being released from prison and finding that you have tax penalties and tax debt that need to be resolved with HMRC