A lot of businesses think one is more important than the other, but established brands know that a brand foundation and business plan complement each other, and are vital if you want to achieve success.
Beyond a pretty logo, a brand is what differentiates you from the competitors. It tells customers about your message, values, and goals. It also defines what kind of image you want your brand to have.
A business with a strong brand foundation will attract customers because nowadays, people won’t just buy your products or services. They want to support a brand that matches their personal values.
Therefore, when creating a brand foundation, you should at least answer these questions:
- What message do you want to convey?
- What is it that you want to achieve?
- Why does your brand matter?
- Why and how do you come up with this business?
Meanwhile, a business plan is the how — the programs and strategies required to spread your message and achieve your goals. For instance, a business plan can help you to:
- Analyze your industry to see opportunities and threats.
- Know your potential customers.
- Plan what kind of services or products you want to sell that will support your values and goals.
- Create a marketing plan to reach your target audiences.
- Create a brand plan.
So ultimately, creating a brand will be part of your business plan. They might be different, however, these elements are intertwined and integrating these two will do wonders for your business.
How Will a Brand Foundation and a Business Plan Help Your Business?
Planning and setting up a business can be easily done. But maintaining one and make it profitable is a different story.
For instance, a part of building a business is to create a website. One of the main points of your branding strategy is to create a catchy domain name, which will reflect your brand.
If you’re stuck when coming up with a domain name, you can check these tools to get inspiration or check the availability of your desired name.
However, those efforts will bear no fruit if you don’t have a strong brand foundation and a clear business plan that speaks to your potential customers from the start. Eventually, no one will come to your site.
You know that a brand foundation and business plan complement each other. Now, it’s time to find out how they’ll benefit your business.
Help Your Business to Get Investment
Recent studies have shown a well-designed brand is more favourable to investors. And raising money or selling a business relies a great deal on how the company is perceived. This perception is the company’s brand.
So if you’re trying to win over investors, you need to show them why your business is worth their money. And without a clear brand foundation or business plan, your chance of attracting investment will decrease tenfold.
Take the new rebrand and redesign of our successfull client trac.systems. With a strong brand and customer experience we helped them grow new enquires and reduce support call requests from existing customers.
This provided them with a stronger business asset that increased the value of their brand and eventually helped them sell the business successfully to an international organisation.
In addition to branding, a business plan will show them that you’re serious about your business. Predicted income, a marketing strategy, and a picture of potential customers can boost their confidence in the potential of your business.
Easily Adapt to Changes
In these times of rapid change, a business plan and branding will help your business to ride the ups and downs of a volatile industry.
Good planning helps you to stay ahead of the game because you will regularly review any opportunities and threats, track your progress, and plan new strategies to suit the market needs.
Meanwhile, with a strong brand, the public knows that they can trust you to adapt to new challenges. Customers and investors will remain as your supporters because you’ve convinced them you are a force to be reckoned with in the industry.
Provide Employees with Direction and Motivation
Tasks and salaries sometimes are not enough for employees — they need something to look forward to.
Clear goals and missions, accompanied by a strong set of values, will give them a sense of purpose and belonging. All employees will know that they’re part of something to achieve a greater good.
Create a Powerful Marketing Strategy
Having a strong brand will help you to create a powerful marketing strategy.
To give you an idea, let’s take Lush Cosmetics as an example. They’re putting themselves as a brand that stands for environmental causes, which is the main focus of their strategies.
As part of their campaign, they published a video titled Year in Review.
Their video does not focus on their products or achievements. Instead, it emphasises on the environmental issues that they care about and how they try to take part in solving them.
Lush’s clear vision and goals, and its excellent marketing strategy are a fantastic way to garner like-minded people. This strategy is proven to be effective, with them obtaining a total of $1.3 billion turnovers in 2017.
Expand Your Business
Most of the time, it’s easier for a well-known brand to expand its business. The general public receives it openly and positively, and they are eager to get their hands on new products and services from a brand they’re familiar with.
If you already have an established brand, use your business plan to see new opportunities where you can excel, and then plan the steps needed to do so.
Just take a look at Google. Back in the 90s, it was just a search engine. But with their growing popularity and smart business strategy, they were able to expand their brand into other sectors like web hosting, social networks, planning tools and so on.
Business strategies without branding won’t be attractive to customers or investors, and amazing brand values won’t mean anything if not adhered to and followed properly. So if you’re starting a business or running one, you should not think whether to prioritise building a brand foundation or having a proper business plan — they go hand in hand.
This article was written by Simon Keller @PRable.org