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Branding – Who Are You? | David Knoble, CPA, PLLC

David Knoble, CPA, PLLC

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Branding - Who Are You?

David Knoble, CPA, PLLC

David Kno­ble, CPA, PLLC

A brand is cer­tainly who you are, but do you know who you are?  As a busi­ness of course!  It is easy to come up with a busi­ness strat­egy to gain more mar­ket share, gen­er­ate more cus­tomers, make more money, etc.  But how much of any of these strate­gies do you actu­ally pub­lish for the pub­lic to see?  My guess is ‘none’.  Here we dis­cuss a lit­tle about try­ing to fig­ure out who you are and how to brand that con­cept for the public.

One of the first things to deter­mine is who your cus­tomer is and what you do for them.  Our cus­tomer is any indi­vid­ual, fam­ily or small busi­ness and we per­form audit, tax, book­keep­ing and con­sult­ing ser­vices (at a very high overview).  This is a good start, but brand­ing from this lit­tle infor­ma­tion is near impossible!

As we began to brand our CPA firm, we noticed that the more time we spent describ­ing what we did for our cus­tomers, the more we found a com­mon theme in what we do.  We real­ized that we want our cus­tomers to suc­ceed in what­ever they do.  We real­ized that we mea­sure our suc­cess based on our client’s suc­cess.  That was the begin­ning of our tagline — Serv­ing Indi­vid­ual and Busi­ness Needs.  Think about these tag lines and I’ll bet you know a few of the com­pany — Just Do It, Open Hap­pi­ness, Your poten­tial Our passion.

Brand­ing is more than mere words and even a story.  Brand­ing also includes visual work.  A logo tells much about a com­pany and what it stands for (by the way, the tag lines above were from Nike, Coke and Microsoft).  There’s the Nike swoosh imply­ing foward move­ment with speed.  Leica cam­eras use a sim­ple red dot with a script let­ter ‘L’ inside sup­port­ing the majes­tic, Ger­man per­fec­tion in cam­eras and lenses.

The logo you see here is our new logo.  It rep­re­sents build­ing suc­cess.  Every­thing starts out small and builds.  Our rela­tion­ships with our clients start out small and build.  Our busi­ness, knowl­edge and our client’s busi­ness all start out small and sim­ple grow­ing larger and more com­pli­cated over time.

Our tagline and the story sup­port­ing our logo all tell peo­ple who we are.  After get­ting this far, the chal­lenge is to quickly and eas­ily explain to some­one what this means.  Try to do this in no more than four sen­tences, prefer­ably three or you may lose inter­est.  Keep to the essence of your com­pany.  Then, use this con­cept in every­thing you do.  Use your logo wher­ever you can.  Keep it sim­ple, but consistent.

Com­pa­nies like Nike, Coke, Microsoft and Leica have been around for a long time.  Their story, even though some of their taglines have changed, remains con­stant.  Each one con­nects to their cus­tomer in a way other brands do not.

Achieve this con­nec­tion, and achieve it sim­ply, and your com­pany will have a brand that rep­re­sents you and no other.

© 2009, david.knoble
by David Kno­ble, CPA, PLLC
Serv­ing Non-Profits, Busi­nesses & Indi­vid­u­als
Rock Hill, SC

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