Marketing, Promotion, Advertisement:
Why Branding is Important
Your brand is more than a series of words; it is your corporate identity. Your name and logo should tell people who have never been to your establishment something about you. Your brand should be strong enough to convey a message and a feeling in an instant. When you run a small newspaper ad, besides a Website, phone number and address, your logo may be all someone has by which to judge your business. If your logo design looks professional, it alone may be the reason that someone decides to visit your coffee establishment for the first time.
When you are developing your identity, first define your target or niche market and make sure your branding speaks to those groups. For example, if you are located close to a university or college, your branding should appeal to the young adults who will probably be your main source of income. If your operation is in a downtown district, it would be wise to create branding that will be attractive to office workers and business people. If you're in a suburban shopping mall, you will probably want to develop an identity that will engage mothers, shoppers and area residents.
Properly executed branding can set small chains and independent retailers apart from the big chains. World Cup Coffee & Tea, a small chain in Portland specializing in organic, shade-grown, fair-trade and relationship coffees, has created branding with thematic ties to its niche market-coffee consumers who are interested in the social issues surrounding coffee. So its branding is colorful and fun, with an International and ecological flavor, suggesting an affinity with the environment and sustainability issues.
I have seen many small companies make the mistake of choosing an identity too quickly. Sometimes when Bellissimo arrives to train retailers on-site, the first thing we see is a sign with a poorly designed logo. We do our best to explain how to use these ill-conceived logos, but to be honest, if the identity is not professional, do you want to see it everywhere you look? A good rule of thumb is to have as many people as possible look at your prospective logo design before you invest any money in it. Garner the opinions of people whose taste you trust.
Taste may be subjective, the law is less so. From a legal standpoint, it is extremely important to check with your attorney before finalizing your name to avoid copyright infringement. Every state has different laws regarding business names. A client of mine in Arizona wanted to register the name "Caffe Paradiso," but because there was already a "Paradise Café" in the state, my client was unable to use the name. In other states, the name may have been acceptable. Make sure you follow the proper registration procedures in your state so you will not have to change your name years later because of an infringement violation.
Written by: Bruce Milletto, Source: www.expresso101.com