Branding is one of the most important aspects to your business. Your business’ branding entails a number of things, like color, font, shape, and more. One of the most essential elements that embody all of those things is your business logo. I bet you can spot a Starbucks from blocks away, just because of the green circle and inside characteristics it showcases. Coming up with a unique logo is challenging. And conveying your branding and subsequent logo in new ways is even harder. “The branding process does involve quite a bit of work, but if approached in a right way, it doesn’t take long to promote a brand that potential customers can identify and connect with,” suggested Anjali Chugh on Forbes Coaches Council. It pays to have a few out-of-the-box strategies on your whiteboard to ensure your branding not only reaches your target audience, but also captivates and compels. Let’s take a look at a few unique branding secrets you can easily employ to stand out amongst your competitors. Keep Your Branding Aligned with Business Values First and foremost, you want to keep your branding and logo in touch with your business values, mission, and aim. One of the best ways to do this is to think about your branding as a book cover design. What will a reader expect once they crack the book’s spine? Your branding is the same. If you use bright colors and childlike font, but you are a blockchain technology ICO, it may not make sense to your audience. Apple is a great example. They have a space grey, white-gloved approach that speaks to the futuristic and innovative value of the company. Remember the first Apple logo? It would not work in the digital era of today. Don’t Copy Your Competitors If you want to stand out amongst your competitors, copying their branding will simply not get the job done. You want your branding, and especially your logo, to be easily distinguishable from your competitors’ branding style. Why? Think about it from a consumer perspective. They may have visited your site earlier in the week, but they weren’t quite ready to make a purchase. Then they return to the Internet and find a site with similar branding, get confused, and purchase from a competitor. This is even more important in the local competitor space. You want your brand and logo to stand out amongst your local competitors if you are providing products or services to a specific community. Keep Branding Simple An over complicated branding strategy and logo can make your potential customers wary. Keeping it simple is the best branding secret you can adhere to. In fact, an over complicated branding strategy or logo might make your business seem overcomplicated from the get go. You want to deliver a message of quality and credibility in your branding. Don’t rush; it is definitely not a race. “It takes time, effort, communication across the board and it takes purpose,” Mary Stribley of Canva explained. “Plan it out, seek advice, seek feedback, seek opinions.” Think about the most successful companies and their logos. Nike, IBM, Apple, Target, Spotify, and Mercedes are all powerful global brands. One think they all have in common is a simple and memorable logo and branding style. Conduct Market Testing You might think your branding and logo are the greatest, but this is not a good time to go with your gut. You probably did a bit of market testing before starting your business, and the same rules should apply to your branding. Once you have developed a logo and detailed branding guidelines, create some mockups and get testing. For instance, you can employ online services, like Amazon Mechanical Turk or Google Surveys to market test your different logos. Lastly . . . Get Highly Creative with Your Branding One of the most common branding pitfalls businesses fall into is not getting creative. You have a logo, it was market tested, and you implemented branding guidelines. But how can you take all these aspects and blow the minds of your target audience? It is vital to add a touch of creativity to your marketing in order to maximize brand awareness. You want to memory recall to play a role in a potential customer’s decision to buy from you. Here are a few brand awareness secrets and resources you can use . . . Pair social media with influencers: You can use influencer marketing platforms like FameBit to find an influencer in your industry to promote your new branding style and logo. Make your brand a local focal point: If you’re a brick-and-mortar business, get involved in your community to increase brand awareness. For example, sponsor a local event and give away free t-shirts. Vistaprint is an affordable easy way to accomplish this. Literally brand your logo: This is a brand awareness boosting secret restaurants, pubs, wineries, and other local businesses employ. Get your brand message out via podcasting: Podcasting is a great way to get your branding and logo across multiple platforms. From mechanic advice to health and wellness, podcasts increase brand awareness. You can set up your podcast using online host sites, like Libsyn. Everyone loves a good podcast. Ready to Make Branding a Priority? Branding is important. Your logo and branding style will stick with your business forever, so make the most of it from the beginning. It is also important to note that doing branding right the first time is far easier, and more affordable, than rebranding your business. How will your branding speak to your customers?