Set Yourself Apart from the Crowd—Get a Brand Persona

Set Yourself Apart from the Crowd-2

Set Yourself Apart from the Crowd—Get a Brand Persona

Jeff Bezos famously said, “Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.”

But y’all, what if they’re saying things you don’t want them to say?

This is what happens when you haven’t spent time putting together a brand persona—everyone else basically gets to decide who and what your brand is.

Your brand is what makes you stand out from the crowd. It’s your sparkle, your shine—the way you show up and the way you look and feel.

That can happen either consciously or unconsciously. It’s up to you to decide how that happens.

Branding Consciously with a Brand Persona

A brand persona is the way you brand your business consciously. It’s a document that you put together that examines every aspect of your brand and lets you choose exactly what it should look like.

For example, you can decide:

  • What your logo looks like
  • What colors are associated with your brand
  • How your logo should be displayed
  • What words are okay and not okay to use in content and copy
  • Where your brand fits in the market (upscale or affordable, etc)
  • How you connect to your prospects emotionally

Why does all of this matter? Because it forms who you are in the mind of a customer, and believe it or not, that can affect your bottom line.

The Brand Persona in Action

Let’s say that your goal as a business is to put a luxury product on the market.

To do this, you need to brand yourself in a way that stands out from the crowd of other luxury products in your industry.

That means you need a logo that screams luxury and expensive and amazing while being markedly different from the other logos out there.

It means that you have to carefully consider what your website looks like—will it be chic and elegant? Will it be clean and minimalist? Will it be busy and badass?

What about your storefront? What fonts will you use on your signs that convey luxury? What will your employees wear? How will they be trained? What words and phrases will you teach them to use when describing your product.

What about your marketing materials? What words will you use in the copy? What images would go on a brochure or a mailer? Would you even have a brochure, or would you hand out something else, like a thumbdrive, instead?

What are you doing that makes your business look and feel and act like luxury?

You need to consciously consider these things y’all. The smallest detail can make the difference between luxury and middle market. If your brand looks and feels like luxury, but your language feels like the way a thirteen-year-old boy from California would talk, you have to ask if that works for your target market.

This is where audience and brand come together.

Aligning Your Brand with Your Target Market

Think of a brand—any brand—and you’ll be able to see how they’ve learned to align themselves with their target market.

BMW is a great example. They’ve managed to brand themselves as luxury even though their brand is, in all honesty, in the lower end of luxury at best. There are many more cars out there that form the true luxury spectrum of automobiles (think Rolls-Royce, Bugatti, Lamborghini).

Yet, in the mind of the average consumer, BMW stands out as a luxury brand. Why?

Because of the way they have managed their brand.

From colors and typography to cost and dealerships, BMW has carefully managed their brand to make sure you get the ultimate luxury experience when you walk in the doors.

If you’ve ever been to a BMW dealership, you know what I’m talking about. Everyone is dressed to the nines. They provide free coffee and drinks in a lounge with leather chairs. They have a beautiful, chic interior, and they treat you like royalty (even though you’re not).

This is the creation of a brand. In your mind, you’re always going to associate BMW with luxury (whether you want to or not). Because of these careful choices that they’ve made, they’re able to literally manipulate your thinking y’all. It doesn’t matter that they’re overpriced. It doesn’t matter that paying for their maintenance is ridiculous when you could get a much more affordable vehicle that’s just as good (if not better in many ways).

It doesn’t matter that there are far better luxury options out there. BMW has done its job in the branding department, a job which allows these other concerns to fade away.

Here’s why we call it a brand persona—because we’re imagining the brand as though it were a person.

What kind of person does BMW want you to think it is? What BMW wants you to think of is someone like James Bond.

Is it working?

Create a Brand Persona That Rocks

Brand personas only work if you actually use them. They’re not documents that you create and then toss into a drawer. They need to be perused by and taught to everyone in your company. They need to be pulled out of that drawer and checked every few years to see if your brand has evolved past the point when you made it.

They need to be living documents. They need to be updated. And they need to be put into action at every level you can think of.

If you’re training your employees to act a certain way at a customer’s house, that’s branding. If you’re buying branded clothing for your storefront employees, that’s branding. If you’re coaching your customer service reps on how to talk on the phone, that’s branding.

Remember the quote at the beginning? You’re creating a brand whether you want to or not. Customers are going to think about you a certain way based on what they see, feel, and hear.

You need to control that as much as you can. You need a brand persona.

Contact us to learn more.


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