When should you brand?
Let's assume your business is a baby for a second when you establish it (stick with me; it'll be worth it). We humans slowly grow into little adolescent people, go in and out of puberty, develop a personality then finally become mature individuals. However, if our parents try to force us into things we despised as a child and insist on their predefined path instead of listening to signs from us and guiding us within our path, we become traumatized. Then we try to deal with all our childhood trauma before we can FINALLY discover our unique identity, personality, and story.
Like us, your company also goes through puberty, self-discovery, and realization stages. If you try to JAM the personality you initially wanted before establishing a thriving business (with sound strategy and a clear customer base). Your company might suffer severe childhood trauma. It might even ignore its artistic tendencies and become an engineer even though it wanted to study design and be a creative company, but mom and dad thought it needed a "valid" career path…
Analogy aside, there are several things a company needs to take care of before considering a full-on branding. These four points are critical in ensuring the business will succeed; they should be planned ahead or should already be in motion before the branding process.
1- Solve a Problem
As rudimentary as it sounds, does your business already solve a problem?
Does it meet a need or fill a gap?
2- Interested audience
Have you identified a target audience? Are you able to understand their needs and cater to them? Did you create a core psychographic audience who would genuinely miss you if you stopped showing up?
3- Good Business model & strategy
Are you able to generate meaningful revenue? Do you have a sound plan and strategy to expand your business? Are your processes in place?
4- A Long term plan
Do you have a long-term plan for the future of the business? Which possible ventures will you expand into? What's the endgame?
I will talk about all of these points in detail, but the ideal time to invest in branding is after we make sure the business will succeed. This does not mean you need to be fully operational before starting. Still, it would be better if your company could generate some revenue beforehand. We need to put all the stones in the right place before thinking about the story and how it should be told.
It is essential to realize that branding is not this supernatural formula that'll kickstart your business or magically make it work. Remember, Good branding amplifies excellent business but is not a solution for bad business.
Rushing in and out of the branding process will cause severe setbacks in the future; thus, if a large sum of investment feels like it's not worth it at the time, wait until it is :) It means you might have more critical fires to put out first. Also, if you don't, your company will require YEARS and YEARS of therapy(rebranding) to get over its childhood trauma, so be a good parent and take care of your kid, okay ?? :).
All jokes aside, if you want to dive deeper into the branding process and when exactly to brand, feel free to send a message or read any of our entries. We would love to talk to you!
Take care ❤️