Maybe not? If you happen to be the only business providing a specific product or service in your segment, a logo might suffice.
It’s possible to build your business in a cost-effective way through personal relationships with your clients. But when someone else comes along and does the same thing faster, cheaper or shinier, you won’t have a solid enough name for customers to remember to employ you.
If your business is easy to copy, then any new competitors to the market can define and build their brand around the new category you created, and it’s likely you’ll be forgotten as the first to come up with the idea. Airbnb did it to CouchSurfing. Uber did it to Ride Share. These newer entrants to the market have gobbled up the market share of those who came before them without a memorable identity. And even those who DID have a recognisable but same-same identity, like the middle market hotels.
Businesses in today’s Google-oriented world need a strong, recognisable brand to help them be found, and not to have their competitors at their fingertips for analysis that stalls a sale.
To stand firm and retain your marketshare, you must become a “The”. Not a hotel provider, the site for living like the locals do, anywhere in the world. Not a car sharing website, the community that lets you be driven by any car you want, in minutes.
For example, if I search for hotels in Sydney I get more than 6 million results. If I search for a brand name because I believe in what it stands for, I can easily find it.
It’s the purpose of what you provide that will make an impression in people’s minds. Your purpose will elicit thoughts, emotions, and sometimes even physiological responses from your current and future customers. Your business identity (your brand) will get better recognition and better recall when people are searching in your service category specifically for you.
Google did it to Yahoo. Hoover did it to all the vacuum cleaners that came before it.If you’re an aged care provider, a delivery service or a jewellery maker (or anything else within or beyond!), create an identity and become the preferred supplier. Your category can and will become disrupted.
Once you become bland, it will be harder and more expensive to claw back customers from your competitors.
If you want to attract your ideal customers without massive advertising costs, you need to evaluate what makes you unique and then differentiate yourself from existing and future competition.
That’s quite different from just starting your business with a logo, colour and typeface. Are you ready for the next stage in your business, to grow your brand, stand for something and acquire the right type of customers?
Follow this link to some common branding questions.
How well does your brand connect with its target market? How well are you telling your brand story?