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Top three branding mistakes to avoid

Apr 28, 2022 | Brand Strategy

We’re walking through three common brand mistakes that hold back business owners from achieving their version of success.

And as an added bonus, you can also pick up a Brand Strategy Workbook in the Brand Resource Library by clicking here!


The idea of building a strong brand, one that enhances trust and connects with your audience can be an ambiguous, frustrating and time consuming process. 

But, it doesn’t have to be. 

There are three common brand mistakes I often see (and have made myself) holding business owners back from creating a brand that brings more ease and enjoyment into their business.

 

Rather watch than read?

In This Article

>> What is a brand and branding?
>> Why does branding matter for your business?
>> No. 01. Deciding your brand is for everyone
>> No. 02. Spending too much time on your logo
>> No. 03. Ignoring your customer experience
>> Rather watch than read?
>> Additional brand resources.

 

What is a brand and branding?

At Witt and Company, we define brand as how people think, feel and act in regards to your business.

How you actually get people to think, feel and act towards your brand is through a combination of brand elements like your messaging, logo, color scheme and website.

Branding, then, is the ongoing effort to shape how someone thinks, feels and acts in relation to your brand.

All of the elements we mention above go into the branding process and help support your overall brand experience.

 

Why does branding matter for your business?

Every brand provides an experience, tells a story. That experience and story is what your target audience either connects with or… doesn’t.

The purpose of branding, then, is to have all roads lead towards that desired experience. Everything from your website to your logo to your social media marketing all add to the experience that someone has with your brand. And, when all those touchpoints are consistent and cohesive, they further reiterate the perception that someone has of your brand. And thus, adding to the connection and trust that someone has with your business and brand.

On the flip side, an inconsistent experience means the person doesn’t have a seamless encounter. The outcome isn’t the same from one touch point to the other. There’s a disconnect between the expectation and reality. And when the expectation isn’t met, it generally causes confusion and distrust.

Now, let’s get one thing clear here. This is not about being perfect. Or appearing to be perfect. Providing a good brand experience doesn’t mean one without mistakes or imperfections.

Rather, it’s about showing up as consistently and cohesively as you can so that you can create a strong expectation and perception.

Here’s the deal, people do not invest their time, energy, money and resources into a brand and business they do not trust.

 

Mistake one: Not getting clear on your ideal client

The biggest mistake I see in branding is now understanding who you’re a great fit for. Not getting clear on your ideal client profile; a lack of understanding around who they are, what they’re struggling with and how you specifically can help them reach their version of success.

Because often, the thought of zeroing in on an ideal client/customer brings up all sorts of negative and scarcity-focused thoughts. That you’ll make the wrong decision, that you’ll pick an audience you have no business picking, that there aren’t enough clients in that group for it to be fruitful, that you need more practice before you can call yourself an expert in that area… the list goes on and on.

But, we often forget that the line in the sand can be wiped away and changed. An ideal client doesn’t have to be forever. The idea is to make a decision so you can provide a service tailored specifically to that ideal client’s needs.

When you can paint a picture of the perfect-for-you person, you’re able to speak to them in a way that wouldn’t be possible if you were trying to attract everyone. And by speaking directly to their specific needs, you’re able to serve them better, thus building up that know-like-trust factor even faster.

I understand the goal is to get clients, so you don’t want to turn anyone away. Especially when you’re new. But here’s another thing we forget: picking an ideal client doesn’t mean we have to turn others away. You don’t have to say ‘no’ when someone inquires. What you’re doing is adjusting your communication to attract a specific type of person; you’re positioning your brand as an expert for a certain category/space/industry/style/etc. so that when someone who fits the profile comes across your brand, they know without a doubt you can help them.

It’s worth repeating: you do not have to stick with your ideal client forever. You’re not marrying them – you’re just deciding who you most want to work with and going all in. Give yourself three to six months and if it’s not a good fit, pivot.

 

Mistake two: Spending too much time on your logo

When I say the word ‘brand’, more often than not, a logo is what comes to mind. Especially when you’re in the early business-building stages.

However, a logo is one piece of the brand puzzle. It’s an identifier of your brand. If it’s strong enough (think Apple or Nike) it can make you think, feel or act a certain way. However, it’s not the ONLY element of a brand. Think of the logo more as the lead in a play; it serves a very important role but it is nothing without the support from the rest of the cast.

Because we think the logo is the brand, we usually place a large emphasis on creating something that we feel is ‘perfect’. It makes sense, of course. Having an eye-catching logo is the goal. But, there comes a time when creating that perfect logo, especially if you’re new, becomes a distraction.

What I mean is we have this expectation that our logo will be the sole reason someone does business with us. That if it isn’t doing #allthethings, we’re going to fail. So, we tweak and update and change… and tweak some more. Nothing feels right and before we know it, a week or two has gone by and we’ve done nothing to move our business forward.

Remember, your brand is so much more than a logo and is made up of visual and written elements that, over time, can foster community, build connection, influence thoughts and make people act.

 

Mistake three: Not giving a shit about customer experience

I remember when I just started Witt and Company – my only goal was to get paying clients. All actions circled around getting more people to sign up for our services.

I imagine most people have a similar thought process and while yes, it’s important to get paying clients, what often gets overlooked is what happens AFTER the potential client shows interest.

Because we often think the hardest part is getting someone in the door, we don’t give much thought to what we should do once they walk inside.

But, here’s the thing. Customer experience is one of the best investments you can make for your business and brand.

Unfortunately, it’s not always the sexiest of topics to discuss. Lead generation is a fun thing to think about. Workflows and systems? Not so much. However, when it comes to creating a strong brand, customer experience plays a big part. Especially when you focus your efforts on providing an experience that revolves around surprising and delighting your customer.

Buyer’s remorse is real and common but having a strong customer experience lets your new customer know that you weren’t just after the sale, that you actually want to help them achieve their version of success.

So, I’ll leave you with this: what would it look like if you spent just as much time on the customer experience as you did acquiring them?


Find yourself making one, two or all three of these brand mistakes? Not to worry – it’s common and you’re definitely not alone. Building a brand is a process that doesn’t happen overnight. Give yourself permission to try things out, to get things wrong and to adjust if you’re not moving in the direction you want.

Happy branding!

All my best,

Need additional branding resources?

Focusing your attention on the overall customer experience is the best way to improve the perception of your brand’s value.

Dive into this comprehensive guide to branding your business to create and manage a brand that speaks to your ideal client.

The ultimate guide for creating your ideal client profile is at your finger tips!

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