Who are you? No, seriously, who are you as a company? What are the adjectives that describe your organization? These adjectives are your attributes. And they are a key component that determines the foundational branding for your company.
So, what exactly are brand attributes?
One definition explains: “Also known as core values, brand attributes represent the essence of the brand. Brand attributes are a set of characteristics that identify the physical, character, and personality traits of the brand, similar to the attributes that allow us to consistently identify individuals.”
Seems pretty straightforward. And it really is. In order to get a list of brand attributes going, you’re going to have to sit down with key stakeholders at every level within the organization and start brainstorming.
Throw out all sorts of adjectives about the company. What do you believe? What are you known for? What are you passionate about? Asking yourself and your team these questions will allow you to get to the heart of who you are and how you would describe the company.
When you’ve got a list as long as your arm, you can start striking through anything that’s redundant or off-base. This will get you to your final selections.
Next, define them. And we’re not saying to look them up online and write out the Merriam-Webster definition. Instead, explain what each of the adjectives means to your firm. This way, anyone who reads the list will be able to act and communicate accordingly. Ultimately, the goal is to create a foundation that allows each and every element of your brand support to accurately represent your organization. And brand attributes are one part of the pie.
So, how will this exercise come into play?
Your brand attributes are what will allow you to start to distinguish yourself from your competition. It’s likely that you aren’t the only game in town. So, having a set of qualities that are clearly defined will allow you to put words to what makes you different … and better.
By setting out these descriptive terms, you will also be able to clearly see who you serve and who you don’t. Otherwise known as your target customers or clients.
Now that you have your attributes determined and defined, you can craft your positioning statement. This statement will allow you to convey your attributes in a concise and compelling manner.
What should your brand support look like? What should your color palette be? What fonts should you use? What type of imagery should be present in your collateral?
All great questions.
And all questions that shouldn’t be left up to the personal opinions or whims of the team or an agency. Instead, all of these elements should be determined by the firm’s attributes and positioning.
You see, once you have a clear understanding of who you are and your position within the market, you can create a visual direction that clearly expresses that position and seeks to connect with the intended target.
Same goes for brand voice. How should one determine what the company’s voice should be? Again, you go back to your attributes and position, and craft a voice that accurately aligns with who you are and how you want to be perceived.
Finally, through the lens of your brand attributes, positioning, and visual direction, you can create a marketing strategy that aligns with your overall company identity. For example, if your brand is bold, you might take out a billboard. If your brand is professional, you may advertise in a business publication.
Obviously, these are simple examples, but you get the gist.
As we’ve mentioned before, your brand attributes, positioning, and visual direction are all necessary elements that create the foundation for the branding exercise. If you’re ready to create a brand and you want to do it right, give us a ring.
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