How to create a brand | The essential guide

How to create a Brand - Hero image

Starting a business is an exciting time. But it can be hectic too. 

Theres so much heavy lifting just to get things off the ground; thinking of a name, branding, creating a website, pricing, the list goes on. 

It’s an amazing feeling to be running your own business. Until you realise, that you don’t have an identity.

It’s easy to jump straight in and make a logo, website, slide deck… But, if you take a second to think. How well do you know your customers? 

To create a brand, first you need to understand your audience, their wants, needs and desires. 

In this article, I’ve pulled together everything you need to know to start building a business that really appeals to customers. Because, in reality that’s what matters.

Table of Contents

Define your brand identity 

Let me ask you a question. Who are you?

I don’t mean personally (unless you run a personal brand), more who is your business?

If you cant easily say who your business is, what it stands for and where you’re going, then that’s the best place to start.

Strong branding is essential to grow your business. It’s easy to see why. 

People buy due to a number of factors; Motivation, perception, learning and attitude. So, breaking that down:

  • Motivation: Essentially the needs of your customer, how can you appeal to them.
  • Perception: How does your audience see the world around them. There are so many differences in society that change how we perceive events. Understanding positioning is important to appeal to the right audience.
  • Learning: How do people learn about your business? Are they online? Social Media? which platforms? (there’s a lot to consider when you create a brand)
  • Attitude: What do people believe in? what do they care about? What are their values? This is becoming more important by the day.

Strong branding appeals to all of these buying signals to attract your ideal customer. Which, at the end of the day, is what it’s all about.

But (I hear you ask) how do you go about building a strong brand?

From my experience, it’s always best start by asking yourself these questions:


  • What is your mission?
  • What is your purpose?
  • What is your vision?
  • What are your values?


  • What do you do/ sell?
  • What sets you apart?
  • Why are you better than everyone else?


  • Who are you trying to reach?
  • What are their needs and wants?
  • Where are they looking?

(You could go further and get out the old school 7 P’s of marketing if you wanted)

By answering these questions, you’ll have a much better idea of the shape of your brand. Now you just have to wrap it all up in a neat little parcel (your brand story and voice), and slap a pretty bow on top (your logo and visuals).

The supermarket model

At Grow Green, we like to break the ice with some odd questions. It helps to knock down barriers in the brain and get the juices flowing.

For example “If you were a supermarket, which would you be?”

It might seem pointless, but it’s not. 

Think about it. If you’re a at the cheaper end of the market you can look to Lidl or Aldi. Their marketing is more fun and playful. 

  • Bright colours
  • Funny marketing campaigns
  • Disrupting the big brands
  • An emphasis on the fact that they’re cheaper without sacrificing quality 
  • Bring it all together and you get “Every Lidl helps” (chefs kiss)

If you’re a sustainable business, you can think about Co-op. The branding is more subdued, with an emphasis on good causes.

  • Pastel colours
  • Information on good causes and where produce is from
  • Marketing campaigns focused on sustainability
  • Bring it all together and you get “It’s what we do”

For us, the supermarket model is a great way to kick off any branding exercise, because it forces you to think about your business in a different way.

What problem are you solving

Let me ask you a question. Why did you start a business?

The answer, put simply, should be “to solve a problem”. Don’t believe me?

  • New burger joint – People need to eat, and there are too many bad burgers out there.
  • A CRM system – Businesses need to manage sales lead and customers better.
  • Electric cars – People need to travel and fossil fuels are bad.

The list could go on. 

It’s really important to know, inside and out, what the problem you’re solving is, because then you can demonstrate value.

In reality, people won’t buy something unless they think it will add value to them. It’s that simple. 

We all have needs, concerns and problems. Identifying how your product appeals to these should shape everything you do. 

Look. There’s a simple idea in marketing. You aren’t selling a product, your selling the connection it has with your life. 

If you think about things you buy every day. Are you actually buying the item, or what it does for you/ the effects it has on your life. Let’s look at some examples:

  • Radiators – Do you really want to buy radiators? No, you want to keep warm.
  • Screwdriver – Do you want a screwdriver, or do you want to put a shelf up?
  • Insurance – You don’t buy insurance because you want to. No one believes that the worst will happen. You’re actually paying for piece of mind.


Obviously, there are things we buy purely for pleasure. But this is still satisfying a need, a want or a desire. Connecting everything to a positive feeling can be extremely powerful.

To quote Don Draper in Mad Men, “Advertising,” he tells his clients, “is based on one thing: happiness. And you know what happiness is?

Happiness is the smell of a new car. It’s freedom from fear. It’s a billboard on the side of the road that screams with reassurance that whatever you are doing is okay. You are okay.”

It’s these connections that people look for every day. And, it’s these connections that inspire us to buy.

Know your audience

I’ve focused a lot on the psychological aspects of building a brand, and why people buy. But ultimately it boils down to one thing. Get to know your audience.

Your customers are the most important part of your business. Without them, you don’t have a business.

It doesn’t matter what size you are, you can never know too much about your audience. And, you should never stop learning.

Developing your brand doesn’t stop when you’ve got your first customer. It should continue forever. You need to be inspired to make every customer interaction amazing. Do that, and you’ll have the foundation of a truly great brand.

You might be wondering how you keep up with your audience. Well, I’ve listed a few examples below:

  • Check and reply to comments and reviews regularly
  • Carry out customer surveys
  • Collect Email addresses for regular updates
  • Host events, in person or online
  • Ask them for feedback (Face to face, on the phone, or by Email)

What does it all mean | Create a brand

People think that building a brand is all about logo’s and tone of voice. But, in reality it’s much deeper than that. 

Branding should be an exercise in audience psychology. If you want people to buy, there needs to be a connection, and your product needs to solve a problem. Whatever that might be.

So, before you even think of creating a logo, choosing colours and producing brand guidelines. Read this guide and follow the steps to truly understand your brand. I guarantee the results will be x10 better.

At Grow Green, we’ve helped all sorts of businesses build amazing brands. If you need any help on your journey, get in touch. We’re here to help.

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