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Revolutionize Your Brand in Three Steps
How would you feel if everybody you know suddenly started calling you by another name?
If I walked up to the mirror and called myself ‘Robert,’ knowing full well that the world knows and recognizes me as Jay, wouldn’t that be weird? What if I put some glasses on? Would I look like a Robert then?
Why is it that your name is the only one that suits you, while others obstruct your perception of your own being, or at least as who you are in your true essence?
Because your name marks your identity, just like the ‘Jay’ marks mine. I am Jay because I look and act like a Jay. But more importantly, a name is associated with a person in the way they show up. My name is my identity, but now you realize that it goes beyond just addressing me as such.
Calling somebody by a different name triggers an eerie discomfort within you, as if your brain has to go through a process it’s unfamiliar with. And that’s the key right there: unfamiliarity. We tend to grow accustomed to things, names, people and brands; this familiarity determines our comfort level with the stated identity.
So what am I getting at?
Nothing special, really. I’m just telling you that you are to others only what you ascribe to yourself. And if done right, it can leave a lasting impression, and nobody can take that away from you. Isn’t that how brand identity works?
Your brand is an extension of your already existing identity, reflecting your personal values, beliefs, goals and aspirations. It stems from who you truly are at your core, which is key to forming an alliance with your target audience. Your clients and customers approach you for who you are — your authenticity. And you cannot maximize your potential unless you know who you are.
Why does your brand identity matter?
Your identity is the cornerstone of your business’s success: it drives customer loyalty, establishes trust, differentiates you from competitors, and serves as a platform to launch products and services. Your brand identity helps create a lasting impression in the minds of your audience, one that goes beyond price or product features.
For your brand to make a mark and succeed, you will need to align your brand values with that of your stakeholders Your audience is a stakeholder in your business, and you owe transparency and authenticity to each member.
How do I form that alignment?
Set your intention and stick to it; it can’t get any simpler than this.
Your intention is a promise that you make to yourself before swearing it to your audience. It is a standard that you hold yourself to when nobody’s watching.
Your intention is directed by your purpose instead of material elements or recognition. It is what grants your brand its meaning that you use to connect with your audience.
Now that you’ve defined your identity and set your intention, it’s time to implement those discoveries in your approach.
Implementation is about involving your audience in your process and delivering an experience unique to your name. It’s what differentiates a Robert from a Jay and a Tiffany from an Amber.
Part of the implementation process is creating an emotional connection with your audience that resonates with them on a deeper level — one that they can relate to. Authentic communication, emotional storytelling and keeping your word are a few ways to put this into action.
People have a discerning eye; they can spot an inauthentic brand. Somebody might be set on the path of having short-term success by tricking or manipulating their audience, but this doesn’t work in the long run.
Relationship building is a precarious task that cannot be achieved with sweet-talking. The process takes time and effort, and you cannot win trust, favour and loyalty unless you start living by who you are at the core.
Your passion is like a black dot on a spotless white wall — noticeable. It subtly screams in people’s faces and convinces them that you’re the right person for this job.
Sure, there are plenty of competitors out there, but your authenticity has to make a difference, doesn’t it? Your passion is that differentiator setting you apart from others, which cannot show unless you let your authenticity shine through.
Forging your brand identity can be very simple or very tough, depending on how you see yourself.
My name is Jay Mandel, and I’m the founder of Your Brand Coach. I hope this sounds right to you because it does to me.