When building a brand at our branding agency Nashville, we first start by assigning brand attributes, crafting a positioning statement, and establishing a visual direction.
As we work to assign attributes, we essentially create a brand persona. Now, this isn’t to be confused with a buyer persona. Here, we’re working to create the personality of the brand itself. What does the brand say, and how does it communicate? What does it look like, and what’s important to the brand?
It can be helpful to visualize the brand as a person. At times, at our branding agency Nashville, we relate the brand to a celebrity or an animal to help us get on the right track in defining the persona. Overall, the persona is a collection of traits, attitudes, and values that when taken together, create a personality for your organization. This personality can then be showcased consistently throughout your branded collateral to allow your target to really connect.
In order to create a persona for your brand, we suggest that you start by outlining the values of your organization. What matters most to you?
From there, you can list out the key attributes of your organization. These attributes should personify your values and should be a true representation of your business. To start this off, you can describe your organization as if it was a person that you know. Write out that description, and then make a list of attributes that describe the person you… described.
You’re looking for about five to seven attributes. You can have more or fewer than this, but we’ve found that this is the sweet spot. Once you have your list, you’ll need to define each attribute. Adjectives can be somewhat subjective, meaning that they might have different connotations to different people.
So explain what you mean exactly by each of the attributes. Then, create a quick statement for each that explains what a brand defined by this adjective does and what it does not.
For example, if the attribute is “professional,” the description would be “highly skilled, a well-respected leader in your field.” The professional attribute does demonstrate a high level of skill and confidence, always communicating in a manner that’s appropriate for the workplace. It doesn’t talk down to the audience, it avoids the use of slang, and it avoids utilizing trendy language.
Once you’ve defined your attributes, you can then write a positioning statement. This is one true statement about your organization that describes how you make an impact for your target consumer in a manner that’s missed by your competitors.
Using your values, attributes, and positioning statement, you can start to tailor how your brand speaks, the tone it uses for certain circumstances, and what it says.
Here are a few common brand personas that might help spark some ideas as you work on your own brand.
At our branding agency Nashville, we relate this persona to organizations like Target. The shopping experience instore and online is uncomplicated, and the copy surrounding customer collateral is to the point and casual. Almost conversational. Target talks to you like you’re a friend. A friend who takes all of your money. But a friend nonetheless.
This persona is used by organizations like Old Spice and Chubby’s. These businesses have cultivated a culture based around irreverence and fun, and everything they communicate to their customers is in line with this personality. Just take a spin through the FAQ section on the Old Spice website to see what we’re talking about here.
This is Warby Parker. They’re straightforward, like Target, but they’ve incorporated an element of honesty and sincerity. WP is always seeking to connect with the consumer by providing value in their product and in their communication. Their shopping experience is designed to provide transparency by allowing you to try on frames before purchasing. And all communication that goes out on behalf of the brand supports that value.
Ok, the classic example here is Nike. Just Do It, right?! In all that they do, Nike is the encourager. They push you to push yourself, and they communicate this in a manner that’s inspirational.
This little list isn’t all encompassing, however it’s a nice place to start. Many organizations even distill their persona into a mascot or character.
Keep in mind that developing a persona for your brand should start with some intentional research into who you really are and how you want to be perceived. You should also look at your customer base or target market to ensure that you’re aligning with the demographic you’re seeking to connect with.
All in all, don’t be afraid to be yourself. But make sure you go all the way. Whatever persona is determined for your organization, this should be woven through each and every touchpoint. Consistency is key when rebranding.
If you’re ready to put some personality behind your brand, contact the girls at Nice Branding Agency.
Get Your Nice Swag On.