“I remember back when I started my first company, the word "brand" was so confusing to me. Is that the logo? Does it mean the same thing as ‘company’? What is it? Being the math nerd that I am, I wanted a concrete, tangible ‘thing’ to really understand the term.
Although the definitions of ‘brand’ didn’t land for me, when people used examples like Starbucks, Lululemon, and Apple, I finally understood.
Those companies are so much more than the products they sell. It’s about the feeling they create and what they stand for.”
Stacy Taubman, Founder/CEO of RISE Collaborative, opened this month’s newsletter with the above reflection. Today more than ever, it’s important to have a defined brand and to know what that brand stands for. Thanks to social media, consumers increasingly interact directly with the products they buy and the companies they work with. Even five years ago, the idea of a brand tweeting at their customers was unheard of! Yet now, we see it happen all the time. And beyond just increased interactions, consumers are caring more about what’s behind the brands they use. In a survey of global consumers, 63% said they “prefer to purchase products and services from companies that stand for a purpose that reflects their own values and beliefs, and will avoid companies that don't.” So what makes something a “brand,” how do you get a successful one, and how do you clarify what you stand for?
Even if you don’t realize it, you likely engage in brand management every day in your work. From how you interact with a customer, to the voice and messaging in the internal and external communications you send, to the products and experiences you create; all of these factor into what your “brand” is. And it’s really important to find and embrace that identity! What’s equally important - and sometimes overlooked - is finding out who your brand audience is. Who is your target? And does the brand you’ve created match with what that audience needs and believes in?
RISE was created with a specific audience in mind - we are a workspace for professional women to conduct business and a curated community for women focused on growing professionally and personally. When Stacy founded RISE, she saw a specific need for women in business. And as the RISE brand grew, it started becoming synonymous not only with smart, strong, successful women, but with high-quality, valuable events as well. But knowing what we want our brand to do doesn’t mean we’re done growing! We’re always looking to stay up-to-date on the needs of women in our community, and to do what we can to refresh our brand whenever it may be needed.
Whether you’re in that refresh stage, starting fresh, or just interested in understanding more about branding overall, we’ve got programming for you this month! We have our focus set on Brand Management for the month of April, with sessions in St. Louis on April 4th, 10th, and 16th and in Denver on April 10th and 24th. Members can RSVP on our event portal for St. Louis HERE and Denver HERE. Not a member but interested in joining us? Sign up for tour HERE in St. Louis or Denver. We’d love to meet you and start talking about your brand!