Remember when I said that investing in your brand is one of the actions you could take this year to make 2017 amazing for your brand? At Brand by Me this month, creating the case for investing in our brand is top of our to do list. So I thought I’d share the top questions that have helped us make the case in case you’re looking to invest too.
And it is REALLY important that you do make a case, especially where an investment is going to be significant and involve a chunk of your budget and time that you will need to plan for and prioritise. So here goes:
5 questions to help you make your case:
What’s the brand issue that you want to solve and what will happen if you do nothing?
It starts by correctly identifying the problem. Review what’s not working currently by looking at all of the data you have, including customer reviews and testimonials. Don’t come up with the solutions yet – that happens later. Instead think about the impact if you were to do nothing because that will tell you if it’s time to act.
What are the options?
There are always a number of ways to tackle a problem – so it’s key to work out which one is right for you. Take the time to share your problem with a number of people who could potentially help and work with the person who understand your needs the most and who has the most relevant expertise and experience to tackle the problem. If you are exploring suppliers, don’t just go for the cheapest option or the one that makes the biggest promises up front – get proof that they can do what they say and talk to people they’ve helped in the past.
What’s your chosen solution?
Which option did you choose? Why have you chosen it? What does this mean for your business? Answering these questions before you go ahead with the solution will help you plan for investment and also make sure you get what you need from your investment as you move forward.
What will it cost and how will you benefit?
Make sure you factor in all of the costs. If you are investing in strategic help, how will you deliver it? If you are commissioning creative work, how will it be produced? Remember, the cost is not just about money. It’s also about your time and any additional resources that you might need to make it happen. Thinking about how you are going to benefit (in the immediate and longer term) will not only make a stronger case for investment but also help you evaluate what success looks like later on.
What do you need to do to make it happen?
What are the next steps? When are you going to start? What needs to happen first? Making the case for investment includes clearly setting out the actions and timeline.
And that’s it. By answering these questions, you’ll have made a strong case to invest in your brand. More importantly you’ll understand the benefits and the impact of investment so that you can make it happen.
The great thing is that these questions work for any investment – not just brand. Earlier this year, I had to decide whether to buy a car before I’d learned to drive and even used this approach to help me justify the expense! And in case you’re wondering, it was a very worthwhile investment and I passed my driving test a couple of weeks ago as a result.