#1. Branding too early
In our experience, clients who come to us thinking they need branding – when they have not taken the time to focus on the business model, customer discovery and vision building first – end up wasting time and money. At TNG we’ve developed a fairly extensive brand workshop kit, that we insist our clients carry out before we even dip a toe in the brand process waters. It is very hard to get branding, marketing, and launch assets bang on if the vision is muddy. Get clear – crystal clear – and the process will not only be more rewarding, but more effective and probably costs less, too. We all like a tight brief 😉
#2. Thinking branding as ‘just a logo’
While having a good name and a nice logo is important, brand development extends far beyond this. If you want your idea to survive in today’s marketplace, you need to think about the big picture. How do you communicate with your audience? Customers and clients are much more likely to engage with you if they believe your story and if what’s coming from the inside resonates with them. Branding these days is about connecting with people on a level that goes far beyond sleek design.
#3. Worrying too much about competition
Far too many entrepreneurial spirits lose momentum by getting bogged down with what the competition is doing. If you spend your time and energy taking cues from other companies, you risk compromising the authenticity of your offering and diluting the strength of your own brand. How they do things will be different to how you do things, and you are much better off staying true to your own vision. Blaze your own trail.The competition quite simply does not matter.
#4. Launching half-baked
Your branding and marketing material should never feel like an afterthought. The ideas of your brand should emanate from deep within your company, they should come from ypur core and be a true extension of yourself. If you don’t believe 100% in what your offer is, why should anyone else? Launching with an ”I’ll sort the look & feel out later” attitude will cost you in the long run. If you are not loving your branding and marketing assets, don’t launch.
#5. Starting with a URL
Of course, it is very advantageous of you can directly type your company name into a browser menu and have that be your space. Don’t let it stop you from sticking with a great name, however. As the online world expands, availability is becoming increasingly more challenging for brands, but one thing to bear in mind is that people will find you through your awareness campaigns, searches, click links on social media, and warm referrals. You’re much better off sticking with a great name that feels right for the vision, than compromising with a name you are not so happy with just because the URL is available.
MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Written by Bosslady of The National Grid and The Drawing Arm, Lara Allport. Running two companies, illustrators from around the globe, a kick ass team and a toddler, this woman eats busy for breakfast. With a tonne of experience across the creative industries this is one woman that know’s what it takes to be successful in the creative world. Read on, for more of her advice to Creatives, or catch her as one of our feature Mavericks in our upcoming Owners Collective Mastermind.