It takes a team to build a brand
After volunteering at a women’s leadership event last week, I’ve been thinking a lot about teamwork. (You can read my reflections in my latest LinkedIn post).
Building a brand is never a one-person job – even if your business is a one man/woman band. It takes a team to do it. Because building a brand means delivering your brand through everything you do and we all know that one person can’t do everything (at least not well). So this often means calling in expert help.
And to build a brand, you need your customers, followers, advocates and fans to speak up on your brand’s behalf, because they like you so much that they want to spread the word and refer people to you. Finally building a brand means consistently living up to your brand’s promise, so that your potential customers know what to expect and look forward to it. And as you grow, more and more people will be responsible for living your brand – it won’t just be you. All of these people – the expert help you call in, your fans, followers, advocates and customers and anyone who needs to live your brand (for example, your staff), are your team.
So how can you equip your team to build your brand?
Help them understand the brand and show them how to use it
Empower them to take action and equip them with simple guidelines, templates and tools. If you want people to spread the word, then create shareable assets for them to tailor. Make sure that your guidelines are easy to understand and easy to find. And make everything as user-friendly and helpful as possible.
Set an expectation of what you expect them to do to build the brand and WHY
If you’re briefing an activity because it will help build your brand, state this upfront and explain why this is important. It sounds obvious, but it’s easy to be focussed on the task and forget to say why it matters. And if you are asking your fans and customers to spread the word, raise awareness and recommend you, you should be clear on why it’s important to you and link this back to your brand.
Demonstrate the impact their actions have on the brand so they will be motivated to help you build it
Evaluating the impact of your brand building activity is key so that you know what works. However if you communicate this, it’s also a great way to re-connect and motivate people to take further action. Especially if you thank them for their support or actions as you do so.
In short, not only do you need a team to build your brand, it’s essential that you equip this team so that they can do so – whether this is your partners and suppliers, your customers, your fans and followers, as well as your staff. And although it may take more time initially, if you recruit and equip your team, you’ll be MUCH more likely to build a brand for the long-term. As the African proverb says,
“To go fast, go alone. To go far, go together”.
And we all want our brands to go far, don’t we?