How to build a lasting brand? Things to bear in mind – Part 1

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This is the first part of a two part series

When a company/startup embarks on a brand building journey, there are certain things they must do – understand the brand ethos, brand values and brand personality. Once you are able to think, breathe, dream & live your brand, you will know you are on a hopefully successful brand journey.One must focus on developing a strong brand identity. Customer engagement is another important aspect of brand building. By being focused you will be able to engage with your customers and start creating a tribe. This tribe is comprised of people who love you for who you are and what you stand for. They will do all the hard work for you and talk to their networks about you. They will trust you and they will disseminate this trust to others.

Another important element while on your brand’s start up journey is to keep your word – that is delivering the value your brand promises. A successful brand connects on an emotional level. It builds and reinforces all the values it reflects. The objective of the brand should be to create sense of trust with its users and customers. Once they trust you. The only way to build this trust is by delivering and continuously meeting and exceeding the expectations of the consumers.

Have a brand leader

Unlike in big corporate, in a startup where resources are scarce, having a single person to be responsible for the brand may sometimes be difficult. But demarcation & delegation of roles & responsibilities is the way to go. Small or big, startup or established in every organization if the roles and responsibilities are not defined then there is confusion and chaos which is not the image you want your brand to project.

It’s also important for every startup to have their team or employees believe in the brand as they will have to work together to communicate the brand to the outside world. Here a few Do’s and Don’ts that every startup must take into consideration:

Do’s -:

• Brand your outgoing communication

• Brand your deliverables, presentations, code, reports etc.

• Document your learning, experience and experiments

• Share your accomplishments with the team

• Do a quality check before delivering

Don’ts -:

• Never adopt an unprofessional approach with quality check

• Never allow any spelling errors or grammatical errors to appear on your website

• Never give out a wrong message about your brand

Brand building is for customers, not business

Marketing is for your business and Brand is for your consumers. It is a gimmick that brand building takes a lot of money as investment. I am of this opinion that if you do things wisely you can build your brand strong without spending much cash. The branding process is not complex in itself, but it does bring up difficult and complex discussions about who you are and what you want to achieve and how to express that through language, interactions, and design. Below are a few important steps which a startup must follow to distinguish themselves in the market and gain customer attention:

•      Think quality - never give up on your commitment to quality products and services. Your customer should never feel cheated on quality.

•      Best customer support – give the best of your support to a person seeking your help in need. And if you do so effectively, you will win a life-long loyal customer.

Most important, work with your consumers, let consumers speak – with the increasing trend of using social media platforms, let your consumers speak for you on platforms like Facebook/twitter etc. which would make others to hear about you and you would gain their attention. However, there could be a possibility of negative publicity as well so it’s your duty to appreciate them on these platforms by engaging conversations with them no matter the comment is negative or positive. You should reply to their comment, using best of your abilities.

Pushpanjali Banerji, is the Brand Director of Kyndal India. She, looks after strategic marketing initiatives for Kyndal’s brands, executed both in India and abroad. Her association with Kyndal India began in 2006, wherein she was actively involved with the company’s marketing and communication for some of the world’s most exclusive luxury brands including the likes of Absolut Vodka, Remy Martin, Bowmore Single Malt, BOLS and many more.