About eighty percent of businesses today are simply that—businesses. The remaining twenty percent have successfully transcended from a mere business into a brand.
What is a brand? Brands typically:
Build value. A brand’s value to a loyal customer expands over time.
Transcend their own physical or online presence. Consumers can recognize a brand without the business behind the brand being present.
Begin to morph with the customer. Where businesses service every customer the same way, brands can cater to customers’ specific needs.
Grow exponentially. Brands evolve, adding business locations and customers at an increasing rate.
In this episode of Breakthrough, Barron explores the differences between a business and a brand, and provides three key steps for taking a business to the next level and transforming it into a brand.
1. Understand and execute your mission.
A well-crafted mission—paired with a perfect product market fit—is the core of every successful brand.
“Product market fit is so important because it needs to match your mission,” says Barron. “If your brand doesn’t fit your market, it will never become a brand.”
Simply creating a product is often not the hard part. The hard part is determining whether that product is simply a product, or the core of a business—and potentially a brand. And a brand is able to garner advocates and consumer loyalists who can share the brand with others.
Brands cannot wholly depend upon the support of influencers, of course. “The influencers can turn on a dime,” adds Barron. But “great brands can correct when they get off course.”
2. Create a transportable brand visual.
A successful brand visual is consistent in all aspects of your brand. The visual should be able to connect with your customer on a personal level, and flexible enough to go in whatever direction you decide to take your business.
“A business can build a product, and then build another product,” says Barron, but the products do not necessarily connect. “A brand builds product after product, and they all seem to mesh together.”
3. Develop a lockstep with your customer.
This step is simple in concept, but can be difficult in execution: you have to stay true to your mission. Your vision for the future of your brand needs to match the central mission you first presented to your loyal customers—and you cannot cut corners.
When your mission and vision are in alignment, “that’s when you start to accelerate your brand growth,” says Barron. “Expand into additional verticals… [while] staying true to those core qualities in your mission that make up your vision.”
Check out the episode above to get a deep dive into why brands like Shake Shack, Apple, and Cava have become so successful—and see an exclusive interview with Otto Othman, the co-founder and chairman of Pincho!