Lucky Number 7: Your Brand Is About To Stand Out Big Time
Of all the topics that whirl, swirl and reverberate within the business world, none excites us more than branding.
Mmmmm. It’s your personality, it’s what makes you different, what makes your customers remember you, makes people get excited, hungry for more and so thirsty they’ll want to pull out their paper straw and drink you in.
But, above all else, your branding is there to help you stand out from the crowd, sort of like a bumble bee that wants to wear ravers-pink instead of the same black and yellow sweater as everyone else.
“Why’s this important?”, we hear you mutter under your breath. Well, how about because, as of January 2018, there were 1.3 billion websites littering the Internet-o-sphere. Yup. You read that right. 1.3 billion. 1,300,000,000. That’s a lot of websites. That’s a lot of noise that you need to try and climb in front of, wave your arms wildly, set off a bunch of flares and stand out. If you don’t, you’ll end up blending in, which is a gentle way of saying: FORGOTTEN.
Now that we’ve got your attention, there is only one question left to ask: how the heck do I kick things up a notch?
It’s a great question. So, without further ado, here are so super-incredible (and pretty easy) things you can do make your brand stand out from everyone else around you (and beyond):
1. Embrace Your Idiosyncrasies
Everyone has little quirks and idiosyncrasies that make them who they are – what makes them unique – and your business will be no different. So, before you do anything else, find out what your quirks are and then find a way to incorporate them into your branding. It could be that you are a photographer looking to grow a business and your speciality is your whimsical shots, in which case make that apparent in the way you brand yourself.
Okay, maybe that’s a weak example. Maybe it’s better if we just give you some great examples of brands that have welcomed their quirks and made it a big part of their selling point:
- Copper Milk Creative: if you want to see what tongue in cheek done well looks like, have a look at everything these guys are doing. Everything.
- Freddie’s Flowers: the owner, Freddie, has taken his infectious personality and built a massive business out of it.
- Critically Endangered Socks: their mission is amazing, but it wouldn’t be successful without the personality they’ve plastered everywhere.
Whether you embrace these quirks in your writing style, your tone of voice, your graphics, doodles, images, colours or whatever is completely up to you – just make sure you don’t hide your quirks. Celebrate them in every way possible.
2. The Unicorn Is In The Details
All those things you don’t think are that important really-really are. They’re the things that tend to get overlooked by all your competitors, making them the perfect way to make you stand out like a glow stick in an empty warehouse. We’re talking about the teeny tiny things. We’re talking about the way you dress for meetings, the way you ramble on in your Insta-stories, your social media presence, how you reply to emails and how you chit-chat with clients to give them the best experience. Everything – and we mean everything – should reflect you and what makes your brand unique.
It doesn’t matter which part of your business you are looking at, or how insignificant you might think it is, there is always a cheeky little way to personalise it. Always. Always-always.
3. Nought Is More Powerful Than A Story
Guess what: of all the people that are alive, all the people that have ever lived and all those that will be born in the future, not one of them will share the same story as you. Yours is totally unique and special and amazing and wonderful, and that’s why it is worth telling. It’s what makes you different.
But it’s not just about being unique or letting your ego take over. It’s also to do with the fact sharing stories is a great way to encourage people to connect with you. That’s super-duper important when it comes to your online bits and bobs too (just look at the Fairfax & Favor story on their website, which was written by this copywriter in case you were wondering). In fact, stories are what make websites so special. It could be through images, words or the overall design, either way, sharing your story (or just stories in general) is the secret to creating websites that enhance profits. It’s that simple. Stories sell the shhhh out of stuff.
4. More Cohesive Than Super Glue
If you want to take one piece of advice home with you and frame it on the part of your wall that you always stare at, make sure it’s this one: your brand’s presence needs to be cohesive. All of it. That means looking at all of your elements – colours, fonts, the vibe, your voice, the imagery etc. – and making sure they all fit with one another. It’s so important that they do. If you don’t do this, well, it’s going to be pretty confusing for people, especially new customers. They won’t know what’s going on and, trust us, you want them to know what’s going on.
5. Blogs Are The Best Secret Weapon
Blogs aren’t just great at keeping you relevant in the gorgeous eyes of Google, they are great when it comes to branding yourself too. Of all your website content, this will be one of the only bits and bobs that it’s constantly evolving and that is why you need to focus on this. Once a month is fine, but once a week is way better – so long as you have an easy to scroll through an archive of posts; one that’s been clearly separated so they find it easy to do their digging.
A great idea is the ‘start here’ post, which is something a little-known blogger called Mr Money Moustache did and it worked out pretty well for him. Other than that, make sure you separate all your posts into their relevant categories. You’ll thank us later because your customers will thank you for doing it. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
6. Get A Bit More Personal With Your Tidbits
In this day and age, a little personal touch here and there will go a long, long way. Like to the moon, around Jupiter, then Pluto and back. It could be a handwritten note with a pack of Jelly Tots to that client you really want to land, chat to your customers on social media, call people up just to say hi, add some doodles to your website for the sake of it being fun and persona, and take your own pictures instead of using stock images all the time.
7. Look At Your Competitors
Look at what your competitors are doing and then find a way to do it differently. It’s about putting that little bit of your sparkle on every single thing you do. A little personal twist. It could be the way you do blogs and webinars (which is what everyone is doing at the moment), the way you host meetings, where you host meetings, how you package your products, the copywriting you pop on this and that or the way you use Insta-stories. Look at what your competitors are doing and then find a way to do it better. That’s kind of the aim of the game, really.
Do all these things, or even just some, and you’ll become louder than the headline act at Glastonbury.