• CIS Agency

From Baseball to Branding – 5 Key Steps to Building Your Brand!

Updated: Apr 16, 2020

This baseball season, we want to make sure you have everything you need to take your business from the minors to the big leagues! (Who knows, maybe soon the Tigers will join you there! We know it’s not this year…)

The big play of the game: BRANDING.

It’s important to know the difference between branding and advertising. Branding is the glue that holds all your marketing and advertising together: the colors used in the ads, the emotion the campaign evokes, even a spokesperson can all be a part of your company’s brand.

Think about some big names like Starbucks. When you think of Starbucks, you expect that specific color green. There have been parodies of the Starbucks logo and it’s still recognizable. What if you could get your name out there like that? Something so unique to your product or service that people can recognize it anywhere. The key is consistency.

There are 5 key steps to building your brand:

1. Find your brand’s voice

This step should be the very first step you take. It will shape everything else you do from here on out. How do you find your brand’s voice?

Consider your target audience – which generation do they belong to? What do they do for fun? What are their wants? What are their needs?

Once you’ve landed on a target audience, ask yourself: what is the problem that you solve for them? How do you solve that problem better than your competition?

Let’s look at Meijer as an example. Their mission statement reads: “As the pioneer of the “one-stop shopping” concept, we offer excellent customer service, low prices, quality foods and a broad selection of national and Meijer brand items.” One-stop shopping was the problem that Meijer solved for their target audience, but they didn’t stop there. How would they make their experience better than their competitors? With excellent customer service, low prices (notice it doesn’t say LOWEST), and with lots of high-quality choices.

These concepts drive everything Meijer does with their brand -- from the colors they use all the way to how they advertise, where they advertise, and what feelings their advertising evokes.

Need more guidance? Try a word cloud – put the words you would use to describe your company in bubbles, then ask yourself what else those words make you think of? What describing words would you use for them? Perhaps even one or two colors pop out from this activity!

2. Decide on a color scheme

Colors are a huge part of your brand. Baseball teams are a great example of this – you see that particular shade of blue and orange and you’re likely to think “Tigers.” Change that orange to red and all of a sudden, you’re cheering on the MN Twins instead!

Your colors will be everywhere – your logo, your website, your social media.

Try this: Look up the Instagram account of one of your favorite brands. Scroll through the photos. You’re likely to see post after post using their colors. Toyota uses mostly red and silver or white cars in their posts to tie back to their color scheme. A local boxing gym, CKO, uses their signature black and yellow in nearly every post. When the post isn’t in those colors, it starts to stand out! You can use that to your advantage.

Choose your colors wisely: maybe they are colors you enjoy wearing, colors that describe your product, or bring out a certain emotion like calm or hunger. These colors will be used in the next big visual step: your logo!

3. Design a logo

Once you’ve got your color, it’s time for the logo.