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Locally Grown Episode 4: Building Your Brand One Bite at a Time

Andrew Adams

Listen to Locally Grown on Apple and Spotify.

Building out your brand can feel as daunting as eating an entire whale. But at the end of the day, there’s only one way to do it: One bite at a time.

Here, Andrew and Joe break down into manageable steps the overwhelming feeling that building a brand can feel like. From how the moment your customer recognizes your business to the moment the sale converts.

Join us as we discuss:

  • Understanding what brand is & how to build it
  • Understanding how your team views your brand
  • Knowing when you’re ready to spend money on ads

Understanding what brand is & how to build it

A brand is essential to any business looking to build customer loyalty. Think of one of your favorite brands and how much of their product or service you’ve used in the past 5 years. Building that brand awareness took time and effort, but with a very clear return on investment when done correctly.

“Your brand is your reputation and encompasses every type of touch that a customer or potential customer might have with you.” — Andrew Adams

As a new business, then, how do you get started when measuring brand is near impossible?

Taking the plunge

Whether your business is brand new or 10 years down the road, the opportunity to start building is the same; but a fair warning: Brand building isn’t something that can be done overnight, in three months, or three years — It’s a continuous process that extends through the entirety of your business’ lifespan.

So, what is that first step? For Andrew, it comes down to consistency: Look at all the little things and make sure they’re aligned:

  1. Are you portraying your company and reputation in the same way?
  2. Are you spelling your name the same way across all channels?
  3. Are you known for the same thing by every customer?

Established or brand new, any business can look at consistency and confirm what they’re already doing right and fix what’s wrong. But this is only the beginning of the journey.

Joe points out how something as simple as customers first interacting with your business — Such as a welcoming hello and so on — Could make or break your customer experience.

With so many facets, it’s important to remember to take it one step at a time.

Understanding how your team views your brand

While it’s important to give attention to the customer experience when brand building, an equally significant area to focus on is your employees’ experience. As the voice of your business, how they feel will echo through their work.

Imagine a company with an incredible product but every time someone enters their store, they’re greeted by an employee that isn’t happy with their position. Immediately, all the hard work you’ve put into your product means very little.It comes back to consistency — Don’t fall into the trap of thinking the product you sell is more important than the team selling it.

The importance of deadlines

Another way your customers could jeopardize customer conversion — Misalignment of brand changes. If you’ve decided to change some aspect of your brand, tell your employees of the change, but give a vague start date, you’ll find yourself in a situation where half your employees are telling customers one thing and the other half telling them something else.

“If you're going to change your brand, pick a date to finalize everything. Throw it all away, have a ceremonial bonfire, whatever you need to do. Because being in limbo just confuses your customer.” — Andrew Adams

Knowing when you’re ready to spend money on ads

Along the brand building journey, the question will come up: How do you create branding while spending money on ads to create leads? The hard truth: Branding needs to be in place before you spend a significant amount on ads.

“If you're spending a ton of money on digital advertising, but your website doesn't work, or it's not branded, it doesn't look good or professional, you're wasting all that money.” — Andrew Adams

Think of promoting a concert for a band that doesn’t exist. Sure, you can spend a lot of money to get everyone to the venue, but if there’s no performance there’s no profit.

A good way to tell if your company is ready to pour money into ads: Walk through your brand journey. If the story is consistent from start to finish, you’re ready.

A key takeaway

Building a brand is crucial to customer conversion and will only help with your internet marketing and digital presence. While it’s difficult to measure, starting small and focusing on building a consistent message across your organization is a great way to get started, whether your business is brand new or 10 years old.

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