Are you a new business?
Answer these questions:
1) Why should consumers buy what you are selling?
2) What is your strategy for marketing, selling and growing your business and products?
Quite often, these are the questions new businesses are unable to answer or create answers to. This may be because at that moment in time, the skills and expertise are not present within the business to create the answers to these questions.
Looking to engage a freelance brand consultant is one way that a fledgling company can get ahead and create the answers to these questions.
Step 1 – Brand consultation
Do this before you do anything else. You need to look critically at your chosen market. Your competitors are wide and varied; you need to identify where your brand fits in to the market. Which corner of the vast business market do you intend on conquering? Hiring a brand consultant will help you with all this.
Step 2 – the process of building your business
This can, at times, be slow and frustrating. You need to allocate your brand to a niche in the industry in which you operate, and then you can start the process of establishing yourself in the market. To do this, you need to start building your brand.
Step 3 – the branding details
Most brand consultants are veterans of the branding industry. They know the “ins and outs” and the pitfalls. They follow and set the trends, they have an acute awareness of consumer buying power and patterns. They know what works, what doesn’t and can suggest some big and bold ideas that you would never have entertained without their input!
This is what a brand consultant can offer you, as a fairly standard level of service –
-Create your brand identity – so important in a crowded market place. It’s not just about words but logos/cartoons/photos too. Visual graphics are “sticky”. Think of logos of car manufacturers. Most people, no matter what their age, gender etc will be able to identify some of the major car makers from across the world. It may seem too big a task for your brand to be the same, but all companies started somewhere.
-Re-positioning your brand or product – you may find that this is the case and you will need the expertise of a brand consultant to help with this.
-Creating and executing a marketing campaign – again this can be complicated to those who don’t know how. A brand consultant will have done many before and will have some great ideas. You will, of course, have some of your own and your brand professional may be the person who helps all your ideas take flight.
-A tagline? – unless you are infinitely creative, you and the rest of the staff team could spend hours and hours coming up with a tagline… which you may not b too keen but you’ll go with it because there is nothing better on the table!
-Customer and target market research – so essential. Get it wrong or don’t do it, and you may not bother starting your business in the first place. You may have the best quality product on the market but without knowing your market, you will not sell your service or product.
Choosing the right brand consultant for you and your business
You need to get on with them; this is essential. You’ll be spending time together and you trust them with your fledgling business. You may be lucky enough to have a brand consultant recommended to you by another business. Personal recommendations can be a good way but if you are still not sure, ask to see previous examples of their work.
Be careful – make sure you are looking at a wide variety of previous work samples; check that the brand consultant isn’t just recycling previous work.
Ask them for references too, just like you would if you were employing someone full time and permanent. They won’t be offended!
Engaging the services of a brand consultant will be a long term investment for your new business. Choose wisely and you will find that your company sales will grow faster than you could ever believe!
This article was written by Jeff Maloney who is an avid believer in the importance of using a brand consultant. To make sure your brand gets off on the right foot visit www.timmarner.co.uk. A brand consultant guaranteed to make your brand stand out.