Do you know who you really are? Are you sure it’s really you?
A lot of companies find themselves doing well in the market for several years. Everything is going great but at some point they just have to get themselves some sort of communication strategy, so they come to us. And even when they have been active and successful for years, suddenly a blanket of silence falls onto the room when we ask: Who are you as a Brand? What are your values, what guides your work and, consequently, guides your communication?
Things become even more interesting when you are speaking about companies that come from industries which are very distant from the communication fields: accountancy, cheese makers, metallurgical industries, medical treatment, or nutrition professionals, etc.
The first answer you will probably get is an operational answer: “we work with numbers”, “we make cheese”, “we transform iron into stairs”, “we try to heal people”, “we teach people how to eat better”, etc. Some other clients may think that their identity is their logo, the colours and even the font they’ve been using since the company’s origins (which is kind of true, but that’s only one of the many embodiments that the identity may take).
When it comes to creating a brand identity it’s the same as when talking about a person. You’re not defined by what you do for a living, or the colours that you wear to go to the office… what defines you is something that comes before that, it’s bigger and it guides all that you are and do.
So, before working on a communication strategy it’s essential to firstly know who you are… what your identity is. More often than not brands ignore who they are and think only about what they do. The good news about this is that it’s never too late to find your identity behind all those circumstantial expressions of it. You’re always in time to take control.
So, for all those who are always asking, “where should I start to achieve better brand communication”, here are some initial steps to move in that direction.
How do you know if there is something to be worried about?
Brand identity is the answer to “Who are you as a brand?” Think of your brand like a person, it works for your personal brand as well as for a multinational company. So be sure that you are not answering this question with things that you do, colours that you wear or the mood in which you can wake up every now and then. To get there, you can try this exercise.
- Analyse honestly and sincerely what your Brand VALUES are. Generally speaking: what are those three or four things that make you do what you do, in the way you do it, and not in a different way?
- Think about the PROMISE that you, as a brand, are making to your clients every day. What do you offer to your clients that makes them come to you and not to someone else?
- Think about how all that DEFINES your brand and your job.
- Think about how your client SEE your brand.
- Think about how you would like your brand to BE SEEN by the clients.
If you can answer all these questions, and the result sounds logical and makes you feel happy with what you have; then you have a clear idea of WHO YOU ARE as a brand, and you are ready to communicate in any possible way your brand may need to.
Otherwise, if with each of these questions, another five new questions appear, or you only get vague replies for them; it means that you have the common situation of being unable to analyse your brand’s essence.
It’s always difficult to analyse yourself objectively.
Keep calm and breathe, you simply ask for an expert’s help to take the first step in the right direction. To get to know something that is as basic and important for your brand, as it is for any person: get a better knowledge of yourself as the brand that you are, to understand who you are, and find out your identity behind the promise you are making.
Only if you know who you are, you will know what to do. And we are here, ready to guide you through this process of getting to know yourself to start turning your brand into a healthier one. So if you need some expert advice, why not get in touch?
These images were designed by one of our interns, Antonella Meli. Who doesn’t love a panicked Wonder Woman?