Listen, starting your own small business is scary. Taking a giant leap into the unknown and putting everything you’ve got on the line with the hopes that you’ll find freedom. Financial, personal, and professional freedom. *insert fist raising emoji*
So, you’ve got the idea, you’ve got a game plan, and you’re ready to take the risk. But before you start strutting around town calling yourself an entrepreneur, you need to define your brand. How you brand your business can say a lot about the type of company you are starting, and it often dictates who will want to work with you. Which means that you’ll want to go about this process strategically, methodically and with a solid plan.
Needless to say, branding is a critical step to take before “launching.” But before you get overwhelmed, I’ve outlined some tips for kicking off the branding of your small business. Read them below. And, if you’ve started a small business of your own, share your own branding tips in the comments…
It’s all in the name.
If you haven’t already, take your time to think carefully and creatively and choose a company name. You’ll want to make sure it is something that accurately represents your company and you will want to double check that your desired company name isn’t already trademarked. Once you’ve got it, trademark it!
Take control of your social life.
Once you have your name, it’s critical to secure your social media channels. This includes your website URL, too. Snag a clear and consistent Instagram and Twitter handle and create your Facebook, YouTube, and Pinterest pages. Then set them up with relevant information and add some backdated content so that you have content pre-launch.
Define a mission.
Be sure to have a very clear mission statement. One to three sentences that sum up what your business does, what your goals are, and your values. A mission helps clients understand what you do, as well as serving as a guideline for you and your team. You won’t want to be confused with any other business in your space. So, make sure you give your company a unique “it factor” that differentiates it from others in the market.
Unless you starting a graphic design business, you’ll need one who can translate your mission to create a kick-ass logo and creative assets. This includes a website, logo, business cards, social media graphics, and any collateral you need to start spreading the word. These graphics will be the cornerstone of your brand. Make them sparkle!
Grow your network.
Now that you have the look and feel of your business, it’s time to grow your company’s audience. Spread the news! Send an email, or press release if you have media contacts, about your new business. Attend networking events, coffee dates, and even cold-email those you admire in your space to talk shop. Keep in mind that who you meet with are your best marketing vehicle, so find those that will speak to your values, work ethic, and reputation.
If you’ve started up a small business…
What tips are missing from this list?
What challenges did you face that you can share below?
I’d love to hear your entrepreneurial stories! Leave them in the comments below! I can’t wait to read them.