Why Treating Branding as a Cost Is Commercial Suicide
We seeing far too many businesses not putting enough effort into their branding.
It’s a crying shame, because the rush to get a business up and running quickly by ‘knocking up’ a logo, strap line, and bunch of social media header graphics will result in more work further down the line. We know this because we see it such a lot.
Worse still, it’ll fail to attract the right kind of customer.
It’s commercial suicide – and that isn’t hyperbole.
Let’s throw out those branding guidelines, shall we?
Firstly, let’s get one thing straight – you need brand guidelines. The guidelines we’re referring to above are those which you may have been given as ‘advice’ when starting your business.
According to your so-called-expert, they’ll form a super-simple, three-step process:
- Step 1: Hold a half day strategy session internally to decide on your branding.
- Step 2: List what you’ll need to create for that branding.
- Step 3: Start with the logo and use it to quickly create all your other assets.
Well, yes. But if building Rome was viewed as easy, they’d have literally done it within a day – and none of us would bother visiting it today.
Branding needs significant investment if it’s to be successful. While many smart business owners and start-up entrepreneurs understand this, far too many don’t. Or they think they can’t afford it when they’re just setting out.
But the truth is that if you invest now, you’ll avoid creating something which is crap, and, as we all know, ‘crap’ alwaysneeds to be reworked further down the line. Often sooner than you think!
Brand strategy cost: getting away from the ‘c’ word
Branding shouldn’t be viewed as a ‘cost’ by your business.
Think back to the last piece of equipment, software, or furniture you bought for your business. You did so because you needed it, right? It answered a need, filled a gap, or solved a challenge. It may even have enabled you to work faster and therefore make more money.
Branding is the same. It’s not a cost which is a pain to bear; it’s an essential part of your business which will attract the right customers without you having to lift a finger.
However, it will become a cost if you don’t invest properly from the outset. It’ll rear its head again when you discover that the logo isn’t professional enough, or realise your website is attracting the wrong audience.
Then, it’ll be something you have to spend money on – again. Whereas, if you invest correctly from the start, it’ll work handsomely for you – right from the off.
Why is branding so expensive?
It isn’t! This is a misconception, and again points to far too many people viewing it as a cost rather than an investment.
If you spend £10,000 on a piece of equipment which you know will increase your output by 20% and the quality of your product by 50%, it’s a sound investment; you won’t view it as ‘expensive’.
The same goes for your branding. It’s only expensive if you get it wrong or don’t spend enough on it to begin with.
Bring in the right agency (ahem), reserve a tonne of time for the task, and branding is about as cost-effective as it gets in terms of the results.
Why should I invest in branding early on?
Branding goes far beyond fancy logos and typography. It’s the essence of your business. This is why you need to spend more on it, right from the outset.
When done correctly, branding creates a personality for your company which is immediately obvious, and attractive for the right audience. Therefore, if someone has told you to “go easy” on branding to begin with, they’re not doing you any favours.
If your business is clear from the outset, it’ll naturally begin to attract the right type of customer. By comparison, if the branding is rushed and cheap, you’ll be starting immediately with an Achilles heel.
No business owner wants to sit around for months waiting for that first chunk of business to come in; we all want it from the start, and branding plays a huge role in that.
Have we whetted your appetite for a proper investment in branding? Good – you won’t regret it.
Just get in touch with the awesome Be Smart team to find out how we can ensure you invest wisely in this vital element of your business.