What does branding mean and why should you care?
The business dictionary* defines branding as such:
"The process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumers' mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers."
Basically, if I write Starbucks
Did you think of a specific type color? Shape?
Did you think of a red triangle or a green circle?
I’m going to take a guess that you picked the green circle. That’s because Starbucks has worked very hard on their branding, and their logo is now known throughout the world. Their witchcraft doesn’t work on me, though, because I never found it a good experience to have to memorize the magic formula that makes an iced, half-caf, quad, venti, nonfat, 6 splenda, with whip, extra ice, extra caramel, upside down, Caramel Macchiato appear in my hand.**
Branding applies the same way to jewellery. You can create a long-lasting impact on potential customers and build a relationship with them from there. Too much branding, however, can appear fake and overdone: it can’t be all about the packaging, you have to pay attention to what’s inside the box. Quality will always be the one aspect of your products or services.
Where to start?
Branding is about being coherent throughout your business. A company is your story, your products are a little bit of you, something you created. If you are telling your story, it should make sense, be genuine and stay the same whenever your talk about it to different people.
Here are a few questions that you can ask yourself to create your branding:
So what is your story about?
Why did you start making jewellery?
Who would you like to have as a customer?
What makes your jewellery special?
Does your jewellery reflect what your brand is about?
Is your business coherent throughout all aspects of branding?
Does you Facebook page, Instagram page, your website or hosted page such as Etsy look like they have been created by the same company?
Are your pictures flattering to your jewellery?
Answering this checklist meant the start of a long rebranding process for me. I changed my company name, my logo, created a website, changed my Instagram account to reflect these changes, got a softbox to take better pictures of my work, got professional business cards made, changed my Etsy page, had to create a brand new Facebook page and redirect people from my previous one (Facebook kept rejecting my request to simply change the page name).
All that before I even created a single piece. But in the two weeks following these changes, I’ve had more customers weekly than I’ve had a month prior to the changes. People recognize me at my vending booth, they engage with me on social media, and I am looking forward to meeting even more amazing people who enjoy what I make in person or in the digital world.
How’s your branding? Are you thinking of making some changes? I hope this was helpful!
** Full disclosure, I had to google that one because, as said, I don’t get Starbucks. I wouldn’t even know what I had ordered!