You might be wondering what the point of all this “branding” is, or what “branding” even means for that matter. If so, you’re not alone! I’m going to clear a few things up about branding before we get started. Let’s start with what your brand is NOT. It’s not your logo. It’s not your business name or color scheme or typography or website, and it’s not even what your sell or offer. Those are all aspects, but they are not the brand itself. Your brand is an experience, a mindset – it’s how people feel about you, what they say about you, and what they think about when they hear your name. Your brand is the STORY. When you develop a business strategy, design a visual identity, build a website, or write copy for your ads, you’re helping to shape and influence this brand experience. Properly implemented, all these aspects come together to make your customers perceive your brand the way YOU want them to. Power over public perception is priceless. And THAT is branding. Still not sure what branding is?
“ Y O U R B R A N D I S W H AT P E O P L E S AY A B O U T Y O U W H E N Y O U ’ R E NOT IN THE ROOM.” JEFF BEZOS
The first and most important principle of branding, the one that comes before all other, is clarity. Without clarity, it doesn’t matter how much you spend on first-class graphic design, marketing campaigns, or more – if it isn’t consistent, it won’t be effective. It’s like building a house on sand (i.e. something uncertain and always changing) vs. building a house on rock-solid foundations. Only one will stand the test of time. We created this checklist so you can self-score your brand and see what you’re doing well, and what you need to improve. For each question, just check YES or NO. At the end, tally up how many of each you have, and proceed to the scoring page!