The conversation starts with familiar words: "I'm starting a new business. I need a logo and a brand identity." That's an exciting place to be. Creating your brand early in your business is crucial to establish your place in the mind of the consumer; however, I have seen a lot of entrepreneurs spend more time tweaking their logo than working on their most important task: their business plan.
I'm a marketing guy. And I think every organization should have the best brand representation possible starting with their logo, brand statement and identity item. However, before you pick colors, shapes, paper and all that shines and sparkles (and I love that process), make sure you think about:
Your target audience. Do you really have a firm grasp on your ideal customer? Only after you do, you're able to create an identity that speaks to your core audience. Even if you're a church with a broad audience base, you need to understand whom you're most gifted and position to reach in your community. While this might be difficult for some to accept, your church will not reach everyone. There's a group of people whom your message, style and location will resonate with and will be more likely to visit.
Your product. Do you know what business you're in? In the early days of The A Group I didn't. I was giving away strategy consulting to get the production work. That's backwards and it will kill you fast. Make sure you know what you're truly selling.
Your next steps. Do you know what's the most import thing to do next? That might sound like an elementary question but I have talked with business owners who were not sure of their next move, and some who where focusing on the wrong thing.
You can tweak your logo and marketing materials long enough to go out of business. So before you go out with style, make sure you have the substance to back it up.
How clear is your organization on these three points?