It can be a challenge to define your brand. Your company might be fully fledged and clear in your mind and the minds of your team members, but how do you communicate that with the outside world? How do you establish yourself in a busy marketplace as a brand with character and personality?
Whether your business is a highly creative niche business or a straightforward industrial manufacturing company, your brand does have a personality. It’s something that exists already, not something you create. Here are six somewhat unorthodox questions to get the creative juices flowing and help you uncover the true personality of your brand… and make it stand out from the rest.
If your brand were a celebrity, who would they be?
If you could choose any celebrity to be your avatar, who would you choose? Would it be a young and ebullient pop star with boatloads of confidence and drive, or would it be that seasoned actor that has put in the years and is respected and admired? Is there a sports star that represents the trials and tribulations your brand has weathered, or perhaps another icon who has bravely stood up against oppressive forces that tried to keep them down? If you can’t decide on one person, you can choose to mix and match traits as you please. Maybe your brand is a combination of the patriotism and natural excellence of Michael Phelps mixed with the confidence and humor of Neil DeGrasse Tyson. There are no limits here. Who defines your brand?
If your brand were a weekend activity, what would it be?
Some brands are a lazy Sunday on a rowboat in the late summer. Some are a raucous evening at the comedy club. Perhaps your brand is best represented making jewelry out of pasta shapes with your kids or playing a pickup game of soccer in the street. It doesn’t have to be something exciting or romantic… it just has to define your brand. For example, imagine you own a company that repairs cars. Would that brand be a quiet, focused session of building a house of cards, or a furiously quick round of chores before friends come over for a party? There’s a big difference. Imagine a shop that fixes expensive historic vehicles versus a muffler shop dealing with domestic cars only. This question can help you figure out that difference.
What would the title of your bestselling story be?
Let’s concentrate on slightly longer book titles here. Think along the lines of “Dave makes parts for pumps.” That’s a good start, but it isn’t very descriptive. How about “Dave saves a factory thousands by getting their parts to them fast!” That’s a bit more like it! Even better: “Dave rescues the factory with his super-fast parts!” Now that has an exciting edge! You can get creative with this and remember to focus on the things you do and how they would make a cool story worth reading.
How can your brand save the world?
It’s time to step into the world of hyperbole. Yes, your company might just make repairs to conveyor belts… but you already know the stakes are high for the people who have a broken conveyor belt! Without your repairs, the conveyor couldn’t run. If the conveyor doesn’t run, fewer widgets get made. If fewer widgets get made, then their customers will have to pay more for widgets or—even worse—go without widgets for a while. You may just fix conveyor belts, but what you’re really doing is making sure the world has enough widgets so that everyone who needs one has one. Acknowledge the good that your work does, and your customers will appreciate you and understand just how much they need your services.
What is your brand’s superpower?
Every kid dreams of having a superpower. What’s yours? You must excel at something that your competitors don’t. Perhaps you have extremely fast turnaround times, or you’re very easy to do business with. Perhaps you work with difficult materials, or you accept the jobs others will not take. Find your superpower, embrace it, and wear that cape with pride.
Answering these questions can help you position your brand in an already bustling marketplace. You may already know your differentiators in terms of products and services, but stepping outside the box every once in a while to look at your brand from a different perspective can really help you find your identity.
Whatever your identity is, put it front and center when your customers call and when you put together marketing materials. Let your brand’s personality shine.
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