To establish a strong culture at your company and set up your business for success, you need to define clear brand values.
They are a powerful concept that will help you make your vision come to life. You can attract more customers and better employees by articulating what you stand for as a business.
Moreover, one study has found that the values you list on your company’s site can improve your financial performance. Your brand values can be your compass to success, and here is how you can define them.
What Are Core Brand Values?
The beliefs your company stands for are your core brand values. Your core brand values should drive every decision you make in relation to your branding. The core brand values of your business define how you communicate what you find most important.
They can be even more important than having the best services or products out there because they allow you to build a meaningful relationship with your customers. One of the reasons it is important to define core brand values is because they can help you attract customers or clients who share your values.
Your Brand Values Should Be…
When defining clear brand values, you need to make sure they are:
Meaningful: Choosing phrases or words that make good copy isn’t enough. The phrases and words you choose must have deep meaning for your organization as well.
Your core brand values will only make sense if you are willing to fight for them and stand behind them. The strongest brand values are the ones your team is willing to adopt personally.
Memorable: If your team can’t remember your brand values, they won’t do you much good. It is best to choose short, snappy phrases. Your employees should be able to easily commit them to memory.
Well-defined: It is best to underscore each value statement with bullet points, explanations, or anecdotes. To bring each point home, it’s a good idea to add an extra sentence or two to it.
Actionable: Every value statement needs to be an actionable statement because your brand values should guide how your employees work. For example, phrases like “choose honesty” and “do the right thing” articulate and express integrity better than the word “integrity” itself.
Avoid vague words like “reliability,” “real beauty,” and “happiness.” In themselves, these value statements are fine, but do they really bring out the uniqueness of your business? You need to go beyond the obvious.
Leave the idealized words and phrases behind and contemplate on what your business is really about and what you are passionate about. To dig deeper, think about negative experiences associated with your niche.
We usually have a more difficult time explaining why we like something than why we don’t like it. Let’s take the iGaming industry and the established iGaming brand AskGamblers for an example.
What are the negative experiences associated with online of chance? Typically, it’s the possibility of cheating, lack of trust between the players and the platform, or sketchy promises in the form of sign up bonuses.
As a platform that reviews and rates Online casinos have done a great job of figuring out what bothers players and what players actually want. So, the values they stand for, such as “transparency,” “trust,” and “fair play,” are something that players can get on board with because they directly stand against the negative behaviour and experiences that can be seen in the industry.
Stand for Something
What would your clients or customers say about your brand if you asked them to describe it in a few sentences? What would you like them to say about your business?
It’s far too easy to get into complex and fancy explanations of your beliefs and values when you are the owner of the business you want to brand. But will your customers or employees be able to repeat or remember that? Will it resonate with them?
Have them in mind when you are defining your brand values. This will remind you to keep things simple and short. Let’s take Apple as an example. For many of us, when we think about their brand, the following comes to mind:
- Think different;
- Cool products;
Steve Jobs knew a thing or two about brand values. He managed to boil down Apple’s core brand values to a few powerful sentences. We can infer from his speech that Apple’s brand values are:
- A better world.
Try following his example. First, elaborate your thoughts on paper. Then, condense your brand values in one impactful sentence. Finally, boil down your values to a short, powerful phrase. This way, you will capture the essence of your brand and make it easy for your target audience to remember your brand values.
Keep it Consistent
The best brand builder isn’t an ad, a colour, a slogan, or even your logo—it is consistency. Consistency is what really brings your brand values to life. You must stay true to the principles that embody your business if you want to inspire brand loyalty.
Ensure you are communicating the same message across all the channels you use. You can deliver your message differently (after all, what goes for Facebook doesn’t go for TikTok), but the core elements must stay the same. Make sure to avoid contradictions both in your offline and online presence.
The best way to stay consistent is to always deliver on your promises. For instance, if you promise overnight delivery, make sure the package will be there on time even if you have to deliver it yourself on foot. Consider your brand values to be your promises.