As we think about differentiating our brand and growing our business, there is an unlikely aspect of your brand that can lend a helping hand: your brand values.
Since your brand values are the north star of your company and help you develop a true connection with your audience, it’s worth mentioning how and why they play such a pivotal role in growing your business.
Sidenote: Need help defining your own brand’s values? No worries, click here and dive into the brand values exercise!
If you’ve gone through the brand values exercise, you know the importance of spending the time and energy on crafting values that truly resonate with you and your business. Because they’re uncompromising truths, they have the capacity to guide the direction of your business and influence how quickly your business grows.
Not sold on their power? Let’s dive into the four ways your brand values can be utilized to guide your business.
Your Brand Values Guide Employee Attracting, Hiring and Firing
When you have clearly identified and embodied your brand’s values, you either attract or repel certain people (and that’s a good thing!), based on their own personal values. Similar to attracting ideal clients, your brand values will attract and repel potential employees. And, as a company, when you’re aligned and operate from a set of standard values, you make it easier to retain and/or say goodbye to certain talent.
By understanding and clearly communicating what you stand for as a brand and what you value, you’re letting potential and current employees know what is acceptable, what is important and what their focus should be. So, if that employee isn’t operating within your brand values, you have a clear measurement to evaluate their behavior against. If you’re deciding between two candidates and one aligns with your brand values and the other doesn’t, the decision becomes that much easier, because you’re basing your decision off of what’s best for the company, not a personal bias.
Brand Values Guide Decisions on Business Opportunities
By clearly identifying what your brand stands for, you’re better able to make decisions based on what’s best for the brand, and not necessarily what’s best right now. We’re instant-gratification seekers and sometimes a business decision that seems great in the moment might not align with your brand values, which makes the decision to take it or leave it a little easier.
For example, you’re a subscription box service and a brand value is supporting local small businesses and only offering their products in your delivery box. A big-box chain approaches you and wants you to include their soaps in an upcoming box. Because your brand value is local community support, you can lean on that guiding principle as you make a decision.
Brand Values Guide Messaging
Brand messaging refers to how and what you communicate about your product or service. Brand values guide this communication by acting as the reference guide for any and all communication.
Prior to sending out an email, crafting a blog post or sharing an update on Instagram, ask yourself, “Does this message align with my brand values?” It’s a simple exercise and one that will become automatic as you start embodying your brand values in everything you do.
In addition to being the gatekeeper for already-created content, your brand values can act as a starting point when you’re struggling with what to create. For instance, if the brand that values supporting local small businesses is struggling with content ideas, they can start by asking themselves the question, “What can I create that supports local businesses?” That way, they’re not only crafting content that aligns with their values but they’re also positioning themselves as a valuable resource for that audience.
Brand Values Help You Develop More Meaningful Relationships
As humans, we naturally connect with others who share the same beliefs and values that we hold sacred. Think about the last networking event you attended and who you connected with right off the bat – it probably had something to do with finding a shared belief or quality that you could further discuss.
The same is true for the consumer-brand relationship. Consumers connect with brands more quickly when they find shared values and beliefs. And purchases are made when those values align and trust is established.
Just last night, I purchased Procreate, an illustration app for my iPad. As a designer, I knew of Procreate and see it mentioned in groups and on social media almost daily. Because one of my personal core values is creativity, I knew that the app would allow me to explore my creative side. Their tagline? A Masterpiece Awaits. As a consumer, I know we have a shared value of expressing creativity, so the purchase was a no-brainer.
Ready to define your own brand values? Grab the FREE brand workbook here – plus gain access to a whole ‘lotta brand-building freebies in the Resource Library!
All my best,
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