Branding is more than just a logo or a slogan. It is the way you communicate your values, principles, and personality to your customers and potential customers. It is how you stand out from the crowd and create a loyal customer base. Also being one of the most important factors in determining the success of your business.
But branding is quite complicating. It requires a lot of research, planning, creativity, and consistency. Even then, a lot of things can still go wrong. And it is easy to make mistakes that can damage your reputation, credibility, and profitability. In this blog post, we will look at some of the most common mistakes in branding and how to potentially avoid them.
1. Values & Principles
One of the biggest mistakes in branding is not having a clear and compelling vision of what your business stands for and why it exists. Your values and principles are the core of your brand identity. They guide your decisions, actions, and communications. They also attract and retain customers who share your beliefs and aspirations.
If you do not showcase your values and principles, you always risk being seen as generic, bland, or irrelevant. You also miss out on the opportunity to connect with your audience and inspire them to support your cause. Some things you can do to avoid this would be to, for example, write blogs about some of your values of principles, Write social media posts about your team members and include some of their beliefs, etc.
2. Stable Identity
Another common mistake in branding is not having a stable and coherent brand identity. If you do not have something stable to attach yourself to, you risk confusing or alienating your customers. With that you also lose the chance to build recognition, trust, and loyalty.
Whatever the frequent and prominent elements in your brand are, you also need to apply them consistently across all your platforms and materials. You need to create a memorable and distinctive impression that reinforces your brand message. If people do not remember you after multiple interactions with your rband, then your branding efforts have at least largely gone to waste.
3. Focusing on Profits
One of the most detrimental mistakes in branding is focusing too much on profits at the expense of your brand reputation. Your brand reputation is the perception that your customers have of your business. It is influenced by factors such as your quality, service, value, ethics, social responsibility, and customer satisfaction.
If you focus too much on profits, you risk compromising your brand reputation by cutting corners, overcharging, underdelivering, or engaging in unethical practices. It is very easy to lose sight of your brand purpose and values. Remember that profits are not an end in themselves but a means to an end. You need to focus on creating value for your customers and society as well as for yourself.
4. Mimicking Competition
Another frequent mistake in branding is mimicking or copying your competition. While it is important to be aware of what your competitors are doing and how they are positioning themselves, it is heavily advised not to imitate them or follow their trends blindly. Doing so will only make you look like a follower or a copycat rather than a leader or an innovator. Which is obviously a hit to your rep.
You also miss out on the opportunity to create your own niche and appeal to your own target market. Which is why you need to find your own voice and style. Make sure to identify what makes you different and better than your competitors and highlight it in your branding. You need to carve out your own space in the market and offer something that no one else can. Otherwise it is likely going to be an uphill battle all the way through.
5. Having a Mediocre or Subpar Copy
One of the most overlooked mistakes in branding is having a mediocre or subpar copy. Your copy is the text that you use to communicate with your customers and prospects through various channels such as your website, blog, social media, email, ads, brochures, etc. Your copy should be clear, concise, engaging, persuasive, and relevant.
Writing a bland copy is a huge opportunity wasted, in terms of adding a little bit more for your customers to have more reasons to trust you, to get even more interested, etc. Sure most people do not care for reading copies, but you really do not want to leave a bad impression on those who do. So put in some extra time.