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Building a successful brand with the three elements of branding

Clare Froggatt
Clare Froggatt

Certain things are essential to building a great brand. In this article, learn what, why, and how to apply the fundamental three elements of branding to your business.

What makes a great brand?

There’s a common misconception that your brand is your logo and colour palette. Although this forms a part of your visual brand identity, your brand should not start and end with a logo.

A brand is the sum of everything people say and think about you.

It’s everything your business puts out into the world, including your products, services, company culture, and your service. Creating a great customer experience is vital to making a successful brand.

How you’re perceived to the outside world will make or break a brand. If you have a great reputation, make a good first impression, and create loyal customers, there’s no bigger asset to your brand.

When you focus on the right things, building a brand doesn’t need to be complicated or expensive.

What are the right things? Well, instead of focusing on a logo, prioritise your customer journey experience. Make sure you know your brand foundations, such as your values and goals. Without knowing these, you won’t be able to communicate with your ideal clients.

The three elements of branding

Branding 3×3 is the idea of bringing together the three elements of branding to create a successful brand. Using simple and relatable steps, you can build a brand that sets you up for success.

Let’s break down your brand into –

  • Strategy
  • Audience
  • Identity

In each category, there are many things you can do to build a successful brand – even on a budget.

Your brand is like an iceberg – the visible elements only make up a fraction of the overall picture. The parts your customers won’t immediately see make up the bulk of your brand and are vital to its success.

Brand strategy

Your brand strategy needs to outline who you are, what you do, and who you do it for.

  • Do your customers really understand what your product/service is?
  • Do you know how to communicate with potential customers?
  • Do you have plans in place to reach your business goals?

If the answer is ‘no’ to any of the above, you need an improved brand strategy.

Beyond that, it should also explain what gets you out of bed in the morning. What do you love about your work? What (other than making money) brings you joy? How does that inform your business?

Create a solid brand strategy and you’ll always know whether you’re on track to reach your goals.

Your target audience

Define who your customers are. What are they like? What are their biggest pain points? How do you help solve customer problems?

Your customers should be at the heart of everything you do in your business. Without them, you don’t have a future.

When you build a ‘customer-first’ brand, you focus on what’s important by –

  • Knowing and understanding your customers
  • Aligning your brand with your customer experience
  • Taking a unified approach to customer service
  • Learning to listen to your customers and evolve

Brands that obsess over their target audience are always the most successful. Make it your mission to find out everything you can about your customers – and don’t forget to record it!

Brand identity

Now we’re on to the visual parts – the face of your brand. Your brand identity includes things such as your logo, brochures, website design, videos, audio files, and any other visual content.

Think of your brand identity as all the tangible tools that make up your brand. It’s how you can communicate your branding to the customer and show up with a consistent image.

There’s no doubt your logo, font, colour palette, and branding style are important. Think about how recognisable McDonald’s golden arches and Nike’s tick logo are… their brand identity is so strong you can identify the company in a split second.

Your brand identity complements your reputation and customer experience, allowing you to visually showcase your business.

Other elements of branding to consider

Although these are the main three elements of branding, there are other things to think about in the future. These include –

  • Brand positioning
  • Brand personality
  • Market research
  • Marketing materials
  • Brand guides
  • Designed assets

All elements of your branding should work in harmony and create a consistent experience for your customers. Building a brand is a process that has many layers.

If you start with the three elements of branding to form your brand foundations, the other aspects will follow… but without solid foundations, you can’t build a successful brand.

Improve your overall brand with the Branding 3x3 Playbook

Think about your overall brand as a combination of the three elements of branding – merging your brand strategy, audience, and brand identity.

When you get the recipe right with these three ingredients, you’ve got yourself a well-rounded dish.

Luckily for you, I’ve created an easy and simple way to work on improving their brand. The book, Branding 3×3: How to build your brand in simple and relatable steps, runs you through each of the three elements of branding.

Using the book as a guide, you can understand each step of your brand. Map out all three elements in detail to build a solid brand strategy, understand your audience, and learn how to translate that into a brand identity.

Concentrate on the three elements of branding and everything else in your business becomes easier. You can continue to develop your brand as you grow. 

Get the book here – Branding 3×3 Playbook on Amazon.

Looking for a more hands-on approach to your brand? Make a Brew offers bespoke brand building services. By identifying your current situation and goals, we create a package specific to your needs.

Whether you decide to work on the three elements of branding yourself or hire expert help, it’s an exercise you won’t regret! Get in touch for personalised support or if you have any more questions about building a successful brand.

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