Blog written by Teraca Florence.
Let’s just be real for a minute here… I know our personalities can be different, but we can’t deny the basic and simple pleasures in life. We love to be surprised. We love to be entertained. We love to be catered. We love to be stimulated by an amazing conversation. We really can’t say no no no to what we really desire in life, can we??? We know dating and building a friendship can be fun and complex nowadays. There are stages we will need to go through to find the right soulmate. Dating your brand is just like that. The only difference with this is you own your brand for life.
The Honorable Michelle Morris says the brand begins with you. Period. End of the story. Literally, it’s not the end of the story, but you get this part, right?? It does not matter what field you are in (i.e. technology, entertainment, arts). You are an expert in your rightful place. You know your stuff. The brand does not do the work itself; YOU gotta do the work to make the brand stand out from everybody else. The recipe to building your brand is your knowledge, expertise, and experiences. It requires putting yourself out there for the world to know your brand. Everything will look fabulous and fall in place if you take the time and energy to invest, research the logistics (i.e. your audience and today’s trends), modify, and be consistent with your brand. Your brand is the foundation of your dreams and works.
What is Your Story?
What’s your story? Who are you doing this for? Do you know your people (aka the audience)? What is your commitment? Your brand is your story. The Working on You phase is where you become a storyteller and builder for the brand. You build the narrative of your brand to the world. This is the time to focus on you and the brand with less distractions. As you build your brand, you ask yourself these questions to ignite your purpose and vision with the not-yet-revealed or revamped brand. You should ask why consumers should buy or follow your brand. You must identify your target audience and the promise you want to convey to the audience. It is okay if your brand changes over time.
Who has Apple products?? YOU (or not). Steve Jobs and Steve Wozinak, college dropouts, had a vision to create products to enrich people’s daily lives. They thought differently and wanted access to technology into this world. As a result of executing the vision and promise with the products, Apple Computers Inc. was founded on April 1, 1976. Bottom line: It is about authenticity. You are what you give me. If you are not clear with your purpose and vision, it can be challenging to convince people why they should invest their coins into your brand. When you know your purpose and who you are as a storyteller of your brand, it gets easy to put yourself out there to the audience.
Let’s Make a Plan to Put You Out There
This second phase, Putting Yourself Out There, is the time to find the “sweet spot” to win the audience’s heart. The difference of your brand matters to the consumers. What your brand does best counts. The magnification of the dating market is real. So are the marketing ideas of your brand! You would want to have a plan if you want to target and acquire the audience to invest their coins and eyes on your brand. You must have a clear tunnel vision of who you want to attract and for people to find you. Having too many interests may not be effective for your brand. It is a great idea to constantly check in with your audience. Here are the four strategies to use when you develop your brand:
Arm wrestling requires time and money. It is acceptable for people to have preferences. If you think about the competition between Coca-Cola and Pepsi, there is no clear leader. The competition is neck and neck; no one wins. People still buy them regardless. It requires you to be innovative, creative, and patient. If you want your brand to stand out, it will require a lot of your time and energy.
For instance, if you are in the entertainment industry, having a niche would be the best move. Niche is a sub-segment that has unmet needs and does not take the lead head-on. The leader matches and focuses on a very specific audience. Whole Foods Market was created to target a specific group of food shoppers who want to buy healthy and gluten free food. There are some groups who are not willing to pay a lot of money for food.
To reframe the market happens when there is a breakthrough or market change. The strength of a leader is irrelevant. The creator targets those that look different, but not new. It puts a lot of emphasis on the benefits and the features of a product. For example, Tesla is a car, but it is not new. There are plenty of cars such as Honda, Audi, BMW, and etc. It specifies a consumer’s lifestyle. Tesla is an electronic car that aims to reduce the carbon footprint.
Change the Game is where there is no existing market. The leader is an automatic leader without competition. It attracts the consumers faster and communicates the benefits of your brand. It constantly innovates. For example, Uber is the first to establish the concept of ride sharing using regular people’s cars. It is almost like a taxi, but it is not new. It is innovative and revolutionary because Uber has independent agents and allows the riders to book via app.
Where Do We Meet?
The Dating Game is the third phase to choose a location to meet your audience. You decide the location. It can be on a social media platform (i.e. Instagram, Facebook), website, email, or magazine. It is okay to explore different places for your brand to be shown and seen. You decide what makes sense to your brand. Choosing the right location is important. Sometimes having a website may not work because it is a lot of energy, effort, and not compatible with the niche of your brand. If you are an actor or photographer, a website would be a good idea for credibility purposes. You do not have to do everything for your brands even if you really want to.
Talking to people can be awkward. Showing your brand is like you showing yourself out to the world. How you feel about your brand impacts how we interact with people. It is encouraging to pay attention to the feeling. The content of your brand is where it will exist and reveal to the audience. Your content should have goals and align with the ideas for the content development. The voice of your brand is the creation of its personality and the tone is the mood you set for your brand. What you present your brand is how you establish the tone to the consumers. Is your brand professional, calm, or serious? Is your brand attached to the identity of a tech company, non-profit organization, educational institution, or a government agency? You must identify the goals if you aim to attract, engage, subscribe, convert, excite, ascend, advocate, or promote your brand by having a newsletter, vlogging, photography, website, or otherwise. The engagement with the audience is so important.
Congratulations, you’re official!
To officialize a relationship, communication is imperative instead of assuming. You agree to be in a relationship. Defining the Relationship phase is where your brand becomes official. Your brand and audience meet at last. It is not finished. You as the creator of your brand must constantly check in with your audience to see where they stand with you as an owner. To maintain the relationship with your consumer, it is beneficial to get feedback. You can do the analytics to figure out what would make things better for your brand. Just like all types of relationships, it is okay to break up and start over. You can take the time to revisit your story, strategy, content, or community to close and revamp the brand.