All of us can likely list off a number of brand names off the top of our head, whether world-famous or locally renowned. Brands are seen everywhere, within every industry. A brand represents the emotional and logical associations that you make with a certain company, product or service. The interesting thing about branding is that it reflects internal and personal interpretations, which may differ between people and cultures.
So how do you design a brand for your small business that customers will react to positively? Creating brand pillars is one way.
What are brand pillars?
Brand pillars as the most important values and characteristics of your small business that you want to communicate in your branding. Your small business can have as many brand pillars as you like, but you should focus on the ones most important to your business’ image and values – for example, “Accountability” may be more important to your business than “Community Involvement.” And deciding not to include “Community Involvement” doesn’t mean you don’t care about the community your small business operates in – it just means it’s less critical to your image than other brand pillars.
When planning your small business’ marketing strategy, identify your brand pillars very early in the process, and empower all your employees to keep your brand pillars in mind with everything they do for your small business. You don’t have to expressly outline your brand pillars word-for-word in your marketing, but use them to guide your actions. If one of your brand pillars is “Community Involvement,” for example, you probably will want to partner with local associations to sponsor events. This consistency and dedication will help maintain a positive association in the mind of your customer.
Check out our article, Defining Your Brand Pillars, for more information on creating and using brand pillars for small business.