Seven steps to branding your new business
You’ve got an idea for a new business. You’re passionate about it and when it comes to your product or service, you really know your stuff. So you’ve got everything you need to succeed, right?
Not quite. Even the most brilliant business needs to get the right start in life if it’s going to become a success. At team scope we specialise in creating brand strategies for new and longstanding businesses, so we know exactly what you need to get your business to take off – and it starts with getting the basics under your belt!
1. Plan it
Your first stop on the road to success is creating your business plan. This is a document that outlines the vision and goals you have for your business over the next five years, as well as covering a lot of the research and details of how you’re going to make it all happen. It’s critical both for attracting investors and for giving you direction and an idea of the business milestones you want to reach in the near future.
2. Analyse it
Competitor analysis is a part of your business plan, and it’s a great opportunity to think about the way other brands offering similar services to yours operate, and what you’re going to do to differentiate your offering from the competition. Knowing what your competition is doing can give you ideas for your own campaign – and you can discover what they’re doing well and what they’re not doing so well … and that will help you do even better!
3. Name it
Naming your business is a bit like naming a child – you might spend a long time thinking it over, but that’s because it’s important to get it right! There are a lot of different methods you can take for picking a name – for example you can pick a descriptive name, an experiential one or adopt a figurehead. But once you have a name for your business it’s difficult to change it down the track, so make sure yours says what you want it to right from the get-go. You also need to make sure that the business and domain names are available in the countries where you want to do business.
4. Brand it
Giving your business a name and a logo isn’t enough to give it an identity – or to make it stand out in the minds of consumers. You need a brand strategy in place to create a business culture that defines who you are and what your customers think of you. Your brand lets you define the experience you want to give to your customers, the values you want to see in your staff, and drives how you will do things on a daily basis so it’s vital that you know what you want your ‘style’ to be right from the start.
5. Print it
One of the simplest ways you can get your name out in the public consciousness is with your business stationery. These items can carry your business name, logo, tagline and imagery, and are an important part of the ‘voice’ of your brand.
6. Market it
This can be the hardest part of running a business, particularly when you’re just starting out! While it can be tempting to keep the marketing budget lean, it’s been shown that in order to grow any business, you need to invest at least ten per cent of your turnover in marketing. These days you need some sort of online presence – whether as a splash page or in social media – to count in the business world, but traditional print media and advertising are also good ways to reach your customers. You just need to know how to find them!
7. Understand it
Check out these links for more detailed information on some of the technical aspects of getting started.
Guides to starting a new business, choosing a business name, writing a business plan and writing a marketing plan: http://www.business.gov.au/Howtoguides/Thinkingofstartingabusiness
Check business names: http://www.abr.business.gov.au
Check business name trademarking: http://pericles.ipaustralia.gov.au/atmoss/falcon.application_start
Check domain availability: http://www.netregistry.com.au