a guest post by Kent Roberts

You don’t need a strong brand to succeed. History is riddled with the mediocre brands of very successful companies. However, it does get around some of the early sales obstacles of building trust. That trust can give you a tremendous edge. It’s a differentiator.

How does your brand build a sense of trust? Set aside products and services for a moment, the function that customers are buying from you. Really what those doing business with you want to know is that you will treat them fairly, that you will deliver in the way they expect, and that you won’t give them any headaches.

Breathe life into your brand. Give it three dimensions.

Your brand sets a tone and establishes expectations. “Simply put, your brand is your promise to your customer,” notes John Williams of Entrepreneur. “Your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.”

Let’s look at a few pointers for developing a brand and the elements of your company that will help you to build and publicize it.

Tips for Developing Your Brand

  1. Think about what your customers need both rationally and emotionally. Really put yourself in their perspective. How can you form a greater bond with them and give them something they can’t get elsewhere?
  2. Look at your brand as if it were a person. That will help you define your brand in terms of values and character.
  3. Like a person, your brand should have a sense of direction. What are its desires? What motivates it?
  4. Be honest and consistent with your voice. By delivering the same thing every time, and by delivering on your brand promise, you build lasting relationships.
  5. Diversify your message. You want to coherently integrate different aspects of a message, says Dan Einzig of MarketingDonut. After all, a person isn’t one-dimensional. Breathe life into your brand. Give it three dimensions.

Basic Elements for Building and Leveraging Your Brand

  1. Logo: “To rise above the clutter, a symbol or a logo is the fastest communication known to man,” notes Alina Wheeler, author of Designing Brand Identity. “It unlocks associations with your brand on sight, so it’s important to get it right the first time around.”
  2. Business cards: Business cards aren’t just about giving people information, explains John Jantsch in Inc. They should reflect the quality of what you have to offer.
  3. Website: The ways that you use color, character, emotions, consistency, and generally establish your tone of voice are just some of the ways you can build your brand with your website, says Webdesigner Depot.
  4. Photography / video production: These visual elements are strong ways to connect with your customers and prospective ones. However, they can also do damage. The value of these elements is often underestimated. Give them the forethought they deserve.
  5. Marketing services: You can develop your brand through marketing services, one of the primary foundations of which is now content marketing. Be sure that the voice of your content matches both the audience and the platform, says marketing thought-leader Neil Patel via the Content Marketing Institute.