Last week I started this story arc with defining a Branding Message. This week I want to circle back to what a Brand is as I define it and then talk about all the messaging involved.
My definition of a Brand is your Unique Value Proposition (UVP) as viewed by your Ideal Prospects and Clients. That last bit is very important as I view a Brand as actionable. Your Brand is only as good as your execution against what your promise is. And that promise is your Brand Message.
Let me create a circle of this idea again so that you can see how it fits together. You define your UVP to describe what is important about what you do. You describe your Ideal Client to be clear on who your target audience is. You write your Brand Message as a promise about your Products and Services. You execute your UVP to deliver on your promise. When you do this, it builds your Brand.
Which leads to the first problem that I run into talking to Businesses. Your Brand Value is only as good as your weakest link. In a start-up, that is Execution. You can promise through your Brand Message anything you want and if you can’t deliver than it has no value. Actions speak louder than words and so Execution wins the day. Think about bad service at a Restaurant and how it colored your entire experience of the place. The food may have been wonderful, but you still are not going back.
But we are focused on your Brand Message here. That implies a couple of things. First that you make a promise to your Prospect. That is a promise of Value. The thought you should put behind your Brand Message is: “Is my Value promise meaningful to my Ideal Prospects and Clients?” I have seen plenty of Brand Messages that do not resonate with the only group that matters – those that are paying the bills.
Finally on this topic today, you have to come back to Alignment. Because Execution is such a big piece of the puzzle, you need to have all of your Team on board with your Brand Message. Otherwise delivery of your promise doesn’t happen and your Brand loses Value.
So, where to start is figuring out what that promise you are making is. And then make it happen.
Have a great day!
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