Whether you are trying to manage your personal brand or a branding position for your company, you’ll need a tight grip on its personality. The right character traits attract the right people to it. Who are you trying to attract?
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Brands, like people. have a personality. But that doesn’t mean they are necessarily interesting, compelling or off-putting. Sometimes they are just bland. Boring and stale.
Sometimes companies are so lacking in brand personality that we simply don’t care what role they play in our lives. And so we ignore them beyond their practical value.
So what questions should you be asking?
Who is my core audience?
Most companies have somewhat diverse audiences. But every company also has a core audience. These are the loyal fans who make the products or services a priority in their lives. So who is that for your company?
Your core audience may be young moms living in rural areas, teenagers who love online gaming or boomers who are nearing retirement.
Do you think each of those audiences are looking for some personality from you? Give it to them!
You may already know your audience based on market research or surveys. But if you don’t know, take some time to understand this important aspect of your business. Because once you know, you can make smart decisions about talking to your core audience and share what makes you unique. In a way that attracts them.
What am I promising to my customers?
Every company or organization should have a brand promise. It’s like the pinky swear we made on the school playground. As companies, we have that same responsibility. But it’s more than a responsibility.
A brand promise is an opportunity to clearly define “why you” to your core audience. What could make you special or unique in the eyes of this core audience?
If you don’t already have one, it’s time to create a brand promise. It will be a guiding force in managing your market position and deciding what products to launch and how to communicate in advertisements or social media channels. When WalMart says: “Save Money. Live Better”, they are speaking directly to their core audience. With a promise that resonates incredibly well. Here are some other brand promise examples.
What character traits does my company have and which should I emphasize?
Once you know your audience, you can start asking them for feedback. Whether you have a product or service that gets delivered every day via in-person services (tire shop, accounting services, baked goods), one that is offered seasonally (tree trimming, tax services) or only by phone, there is always an opportunity to ask about the characteristics of your brand personality.
Ask “When you think about (your brand), what comes to mind?” Or “If we were a person, how would you describe us?” You can ask this of your employees and of your customers. And you can ask it to yourself.
It’s not just the way you are perceived today, it is your ongoing opportunity to establish your own personality. To decide how you want people to feel about your brand.
This brand personality can include character traits like serious, confident, fun, playful, helpful, or provocative. Which of those words sound like a fit to you?
Where should I be sharing my personality?
Once you have a clear personality, that needs to be obvious wherever your product or service is delivered. Your website needs to be written with a voice and style that conveys your personality.
Whether you are established on social networks or just getting started on Twitter, this is a perfect place to be your authentic self and begin attracting people.
Your packaging, storefront, menu, employees all can and should be an ongoing visual representation. A regular relationship builder.
What will I gain by having a clearly defined brand personality?
You will more effectively reach and attract more target customers. Simple as that. But you won’t reach everybody. And that scares people sometimes.
What if I push people away because my personality is too obvious?
If you’re not pushing a few people away, you’re not really attracting anyone. You are bland – just like so many others.
So create a personality that fits you, your approach to the category or market, and your brand promise. Your business will get stronger as a result of you thinking more clearly about your core audience and what aspects of your personality they’d like to see.
So how can I help?
Thanks UggBoy♥UggGirl for the great photo via Flickr