Nowadays the word branding is usually thrown around like confetti. Seriously! A lot Of people either don’t know or don’t understand what branding means that a lot of people use it interchangeably with marketing.

Marketing is NOT branding. Marketing is a method or strategy used to get more eyeballs on your business. Please don’t confuse the two. 

Branding is sharing your story or message through your image, feelings, emotions, name, brand assets and style. It’s an experience that your ideal client experiences when they see, feel, touch and smell your product/services. 

Branding is not sales. Branding is not your blog.  Branding is not marketing

Read on for the 4 things you need to create a smart brand in 2018

4 Things You Need to Create a Smart Brand in 2018
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Core Values

What are your core brand values? What do you stand for in life? Use the word that best describes what you’d like your ideal client to feel and what YOUR values are. The mesh between the two helps craft a message that will be unique to you and your brand.

Your core values will help in solidifying your brand message to your audience. People can and will identify you with what your brand stands for. Don’t do something just because someone said so. Do it because it feels right for you, your goals and your brand’s vision.

Messaging 

Start with the way you communicate/talk. Are you humorous, quirky, technical? How you talk (and write) helps define your brand message. Your brand voice really helps convey the message, visuals and whatever else you’re doing to capture your audience’s attention.

Your core values play a big role in shaping your brand message because they’re based on your personality and your voice. And your voice is how you speak.

I will be the first to tell you to write like how you speak. I mean how else will you able to connect with your audience if you don’t use your authentic voice to write to your audience?

Positioning 

Brand positioning is about building authority. It’s about how your audience sees where your expertise lies. You can build brand positioning in many ways like being an author (check and order my book

The Branding Blueprint), being a social media influencer, or an infopreneur known for creating certain products and services.

How you position yourself is how people will perceive you. We’re visual human beings, and in this social media age, visuals play a big part in how your brand is perceived and positioned.

Think about how you can build brand authority through writing for major publications, hosting workshops, interviewing successful entrepreneurs and sharing that content with your audience, writing a book or positioning yourself as a lifestyle brand that your audience can relate to.

 
A brand is a signature. However, people associate your brand is with signature things they see. Like your message, your values, your logo, color palette, writing style, the platform you use. All these are signatures of your brand.

Platform

The platforms you choose to be are the ones your audience would most likely follow you on. However being everywhere is not really sufficient for brand building. 
You first need to go where your audience is. Knowing where they make it easier for you to create content that’s tailored to them. So if your audience is on SnapChat more than Instagram then, that’s where you need to focus your efforts on.
Social media nowadays is a pay to play world. Algorithms change, and people start panicking about losing their followers. Your efforts should first be on building an email list. Becuase is one day Facebook shuts down or Instagram goes offline, what are you left with? Who will you be sharing your brand’s products or services with? 
Email is the first and best platform to create before diving into a social media strategy. Focus your efforts on building die-hard fans who will be ready to buy from you because you’ve already built the like trust and know factor. 
At the end of the day, branding is about being consistent. Your audience would come to expect consistency in all that you do. Quality and consistency are the keys to building a smart brand in 2018. 

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