When starting the process of branding, or re-branding, one of the first things I usually ask my clients is: what is your business?
This question is pretty simple, but tricky, because getting the answer can be quite challenging. A company that produces cleaning products doesn’t only sell cleaning products, simply. It sells cleaning solutions to make your house cleaner and give your life some extra time to do whatever you want, for example. What is the business of a farmers’ market? To sell fruits and vegetables? Maybe sometimes, but a company willing to grow would say their business is to promote a healthier lifestyle by selling healthy food. Can you tell the difference?
And how can you find out what is your business, what is really your deal?
Start by making statements on how you are contributing to your customer, your clients, your neighborhood, your city, your country, your planet. We help our clients to launch their business and/or promote it, increasing the sales, creating jobs and strengthening the economy. We can also consider that we’re leaving the world more beautiful and interesting through our work as graphic designers and illustrators. So many things that make us believe deeply in our work.
If your main objective is the money, your only profit, an idea that will make you a millionaire but will not benefit a lot of people… just stop.
I’m not telling you to ignore the fact that we live in a capitalist world. I’m just reminding you that your business will only evolve, prosper and live a long (worth it) life if it is useful to people. In practice this can be much harder than it sounds, and here are some questions that can guide you through creating your statements:
– What am I selling, plain and simple?
– Who am I benefiting directly?
– What am I also providing my clients?
– Who am I benefiting indirectly?
– How is my business benefiting society?
– Will my business make a meaningful difference? To whom?
For some people, these are easy questions to answer but for others, I’ve personally seen a lot of struggle because it can be so hard to translate your dreams, or goals, or great ideas into something that fits the need of a variety of people. Writing these statements will show you if you’re on the right path. Even for those who already own a business, if you don’t know these answers you will eventually get stuck.
I hope this was helpful and feel free to comment or write us if you want to talk more about how to fit your business.
Daniela Torres is the founder and Creative Director of KIAI. With over 12 years of experience working as a journalist, press officer and graphic designer, Daniela is a brand strategist that has been leading design and marketing projects for multiple industries. She’s also the author of the book “Build Your Brand – The 10 essential steps before launching your business”.