Building up Your Corporate Identity from Scratch
So what’s your style? What’s your fashion? How would you describe yourself?This is a tough question to answer for anyone. Maybe in high school you were more “jock” or “punk,” while in college you were the “refined gentleman” or, if you care to admit it, the “party animal.” How you acted also determined how you dressed and maybe you preferred jeans and sweaters to dresses and blazers. Whatever the case, everyone’s got a style all their own and they can be identified both uniquely and collectively in whatever era they live in from their own personal style.But do all businesses have a unique identity? You would think they would, but all too often some businesses copy one another or imitate other more successful enterprises to gain a quick buck. Especially in an era where it’s so hard to be unique and information is so plentiful, having a distinct business style is hard to do.But, as an independent business pro, you know that it’s simply not impossible to have a great business style. Like everything else you do, you simply have to chip away a bit to work towards building your own business’ individual style. This is called corporate identity development.There are a few factors that you have to adhere to create a strong corporate identity development. They aren’t that hard, but they are often neglected by certain business pros. As a result, their business suffers as they deviate from the path of corporate identity development. This doesn’t have to happen to you, provided you stay focused.
Right from the get-go, you have to have a strong mission in your business’ goals. This sometimes seems silly or cliché in the world of business, where all-too-keen business novices make strong statements and dramatically live by them as if they were religious mantras. You don’t have to do this; but, in proper corporate identity development, you should have a mission statement to show both clients and associates. Even something as simple as “TO DELIVER QUALITY SERVICES AND PRODUCTS TO THE CLIENT AT LARGE” is a good place to start to build the first part of corporate identity development.
Branding yourself is a nice place to continue on to build your corporate identity development. You should sit down, perhaps with a designer or someone of creative talent, and come up with the necessary visual representations for your business. Coming up with a color scheme, designing a logo, and even creating a series of uniforms if necessary are all part of the branding aspect of corporate identity development. Visual identity isn’t as serious for some businesses as it is for others, but almost all businesses have to make some considerations for visual representation. By branding your company with a well-balanced series of colors, images, graphics, and other visual images, you’re showing the public how you’ve build corporate identity development to please the senses even before you please them with your products/services.
And, of course, the major component of corporate identity development is building a strong client following. The loyalty of the client is something so strong that it lasts for generations. Think of why sons imitate their fathers in driving “Fords” or “Chevys” or why some students attend university because their extended families did. Both cases are examples of customer loyalty. As an independent business pro, you have to do the same. Defining AND executing great customer service is the only way to create customer loyalty that cements corporate identity development properly. Without strong customer support again and again, your corporate identity development can never actually be realized.
If you think of some of the major world corporations—Apple, Ford, Paramount—all have been successful because they had focus. They defined who they were, what they wanted to show the public, and strove to deliver quality to the public right before their first product rolled off the assembly line. That’s the kind of corporate identity development that all successful businesses have. Some don’t bother with it. But if you work towards strong corporate identity development from the first second of your business venture’s beginning, you set a path of determined success that cannot be rivaled.
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