A lot of people equate branding with formalities and I’m guilty of this as well. We tend to see branding as a ‘thing’ or some abstract symbol or bold badge that a company or business should be known for. Which is why many people work so hard at trying to build it, it’s no wonder the result is always robotic.
Too much planning, too much perfectionism and the entire formalities just often end up creating a brand that’s too serious or worse distant and abstract to its customers. But what if there was a way to make our brand more human? The same way we love reality shows (even though they have been grossly mishandled) and social media for bringing our favourite celebrities or pages closer to us, that is the same way we love brands who are more relatable and make us feel like they are real humans behind them.
How then can you make your brand more human?
1. Be emotional
Even if your company is about growing civilians into military-minded people, there is always a way to be emotional about it. The emotion here is not limited to sadness or depression, it could also be entertaining. Whatever makes people want to laugh, cry, jump, roll on the floor or just reflect is emotional; it means you have successfully appealed to their emotions. It’s easier for people to engage with your brand and business when they can relate to it. It will come almost naturally to them. A practical example can be seen in the company Coca-cola, here is one brand that is big at ensuring the spread of happiness
2. Be original
Your logo, brand colour, slogan and even vision and mission statements, should be authentic and original. They should reflect the values and passions you stand for. Nothing makes a brand more admired than its uniqueness and originality. Don’t make promises you can’t. I have a favourite way of putting it, “do not over promise and under deliver, but you can (should) under-promise and over-deliver”.
3. Honest brands are happy brands
Yes, you’ll be happier if you’re being honest because:
- You no longer have to look over your shoulder every time because you are afraid you’ll get caught (in whatever shady stuff you’re into).
- You’re under no pressure whatsoever to impress and that is true liberty.
- Your followers or customers or clients are genuine because they made their decisions out of their own volitions and there was no sneaky peaky done to get them there
- That way, you get to know them even better and I mean, now you can serve them even better.
- And lots more…
4. Maximize social media
Data they say is the new oil and the internet is the sure place to be for any brand that wants to be consequential in the present day. However, it is easier said than done because not only is content tasking to create, getting followers and knowing how best to engage with them is a whole other thing. Another key thing to note is the fact that all social media platforms have unique ways to navigate them and that is why YouTube deals more with visual content than Twitter, etc. To be oblivious to these things is to commit grade 7 felony of the acts of secret code of (clears throat) social media. And the punishment is 2 followers, 1 comment and 2 likes for the next 90days!
Remember that one time you were in little and in school, how your mind always drift away when the teacher is teaching (it’s always silly distractions like the last tom & jerry you saw or how you can’t wait for the class to end so you can lick the lollipop in your bag): remember how your attention jerks back into the class as soon as your teacher begins to tell a story. Your eyes get widened in amusement just like every other kid in class so that if a pin dropped to the floor, everyone would near the sound. Such is the profound power stories hold till date and this is regardless of age, race, status or gender. Stories are emotional, personal, entertaining and attention-grabbing. Through stories, we build connections, create possibilities and reach out to people. Brands, entrepreneurs or influencers with good mastery of the art of storytelling, will have not many problems selling.
Ultimately, people are more loyal to brands that appeal to their emotions. This is because feelings more than logic determines what we do eventually. That’s the secret of influencers, they create content by leveraging storytelling and emotions and pull in so much traffic and it all seems natural and that’s because it’s natural. If you build your brand this way, your community would not feel lost, compelled or manipulated, they will feel like they are being carried along and that’s the goal. That should be the goal.