Quick. What does your brand say about you?
The best branding connects on a visual, mental, and emotional level. Does your branding do that?
It should. Branding yourself is really important.
There are millions of companies vying for attention. So if you don’t have strong branding that delivers a definitive perception about your business, you might as well just be another drop in the bucket.
But with all that competition and so SO many ways to market yourself, how do you make your brand stand out from all the others?
You need to get creative.
The Best Branding Ideas Require Some Originality
Not taking your brand seriously is akin to delivering your company a death sentence.
But that doesn’t mean you have to BE serious.
In fact, consider making 2019 the year to find playful and original ways to market yourself and set yourself apart from everybody else.
That doesn’t mean it isn’t going to be hard work though. Successful brands have given up plenty of blood, sweat, and tears to get there. But they’ll all tell you it was worth it.
So the big question is – what will set your new business apart from those that have already been established?
Here are some ideas to get you started.
1. Know Your Archetype
This may sound like pop psychology. And it is, to some degree.
If you’ve ever read or studied Carl Jung, then you’ve heard of archetypes. In Jungian psychology, the archetypes represent universal patterns and images that are part of the collective unconscious.
So how does this work from a branding perspective?
Many of the biggest brands have capitalized on this. For example, the visionary archetype was embraced by Apple, while Nike took on the warrior archetype.
What compelling story can you create around your brand story?
2. Use a Brand Influencer
Much less abstract than finding your archetype is finding a brand influencer.
This is an actual person who has a big following on social media. And if you can get this person in your corner and talking up your business, you’re going to build your brand while creating awareness.
Okay, this may not be one of the most creative think-outside-the-box ideas. But social media cannot be ignored in 2019.
Start by browsing some of the top names in your industry on social media. Then check out the people your customers follow. Try to find as many as possible who embrace your company’s mission and values and you’ve got potential influencers.
If you can secure one of them, you’ll expose your brand to hundreds, if not thousands of new clients.
3. Use Highly-Targeted Snail Mail
Snail mail? In 2019?
Many new companies make the mistake of relying solely on digital marketing to get new leads.
But there’s something to be said for sending personalized letters to your target customers. Especially local customers.
Brainstorm ways you could make those letters help potential customers in some way. For example, if you’re a designer, you could supply a USB toggle containing a breakdown of the company’s website and then offer ways you can improve upon its design.
Even if they don’t have an immediate need for your product or service, when they do, they’re sure to remember your brand.
4. Test the Effectiveness of Your Logo
Since it’s the first thing people recognize, your logo is at the center of your brand. So it needs to have a memorable design.
But if the logo design doesn’t scale correctly, it’s going to look unprofessional. And that’s not a quality you want to be associated with your brand.
Your logo needs to pass the fax test and the stamp/bus test.
Fax machines are fairly obsolete. But there’s almost no better source for checking the effectiveness of your logo than on a faxed document. If it looks good there, it’ll present well on all other printed media.
And the stamp/bus test ensures that your logo design is neither too complex nor simple. Your logo – and thus your brand – should be as equally recognizable on a postage stamp as on the side of a bus.
5. Shift Your Focus to the Streets
If you haven’t picked up on it yet, the majority of our branding ideas are not focused on the digital world.
And just as there’s an appreciation for personalized letters, going old school with posters or flyers is a fantastic way to establish your brand on a local level.
You can also employ your artistic skills with a little sidewalk chalk on the pavement in your community and those that neighbor it. You could even commission an artist to include your brand in a mural on a prominent building.
Investigate all the possibilities your surroundings have to offer.
6. Design a Unique Business Card
Business cards still matter. And they should be a part of your branding efforts.
So is there a way you can somehow merge your product or service with your card? This can take some serious creativity.
For instance, if you’re selling clothes, you could attach custom zipper pulls with your logo to laser cut business cards. It gives potential customers something that’s both informational and practical.
7. Embrace the Power of Print
If you want people to truly feel and interact with your brand, then don’t underestimate the importance of print.
Print is tactile. And despite the perceived shift to all things digital, creative brand makers are taking advantage of this.
With print, you can incorporate print advertising techniques that were “all the rage” decades ago. There are plenty of “tease and reveal” style executions you can use to reveal your brand.
Plus, retro is cool.
But you can also take advantage of the advances in print technology since then too. From edible paper to photochromic ink that’s only revealed in sunlight, you can physically engage your audience in ways that digital just can’t.
The best branding is memorable for all the right reasons.
Don’t be afraid to take traditional and proven marketing strategies and put your own unique twist on them.
After all, effective branding is crucial to the life of your company.
For more up-to-date articles and information, keep checking back with our branding blog. And start celebrating your own brand.