Brand values make your business stand out in the saturated market. There could be numerous businesses selling similar products to yours and targeting the same groups of people. Brand values are one of the elements that give your target audience a reason to shop from you and not your competition.
What is a brand value? It is a set of principles that guides your company when making important decisions, such as your brand's behavior in some situations. Your brand values are not just a piece of information you give to your audience for marketing purposes. They should be visible when interacting with your consumers.
Successful brand values are unique, memorable, timeless, and actionable. Read along if these characteristics sound complex and you need to learn how to develop successful brand values. You can use our tips as an ultimate guide to brand values determination.
Importance of Brand Values
Image taken from Strikingly’s user’s website
If you understand the sheer importance of brand values, you wouldn't have a hard time determining them. And this will benefit your business in multiple ways.
Brand values can give you a point over big companies. Suppose you run a small business and can't compete with other companies because of your financial situation. You may not be able to compete with their size, but you can enhance the consumer experience by lining up your brand's values with theirs. For instance, your brand supports eco-friendliness or fair trade. People are more attracted to brands that have similar beliefs as them.
Your brand must behave according to its values. Here's why–it builds credibility when potential consumers see your brand as telling and acting on your values. And when people trust your brand, they will not only become a part of your loyal customer base but also refer you to their connections, bringing your company recognition.
To let people know your company is acting on its values, you need to display them. One of the most effective ways of educating people about your brand's morals is through your business's website.
If your company already has a website, display your brand values through the content. If you don’t have a website, get one today using Strikingly for little to no money.
Strikingly is a website builder that lets you build a responsive website without coding and web design experience. Using Strikingly's ready-to-use site templates, you can create your website within a few minutes.
Image taken from Strikingly
Strikingly offers numerous features, such as Simple Blog, through which you can portray your brand's standards. In your Strikingly blog, you can publish articles on topics your business values, such as eco-friendliness, if your business is related to nature.
The Simple Blog comes with extensive features such as Accelerated Mobile Pages, scheduling blog posts, RSS feed, categories for posts, blog email subscription, enabling blog post comments to interact with your audience, and Google Analytics. The Google Analytics feature can help you study your consumers' behavior patterns and act according to them.
Image taken from Strikingly
A Deeper Dive into the Characteristics of Effective Brand Values
Let's dig deeper into the characteristics of successful brand values to see why they are essential.
When your brand values are actionable, you can take measures accordingly or communicate something through them. Your company's morals would be nothing but words if they're impractical. Phrases mean nothing to people when they can't see the change they bring.
Your brand values should be memorable so that the people within your brand can act or communicate them. How will they implement the company's morals if they can't remember them?
One of the primary purposes of brand values is to set your company apart from your competitors. Unique brand values complete that purpose.
You wouldn't want your brand to value a materialistic thing that can change over time. This won't be right and won't create an impression of a reputable brand. Your company shows belief in something timeless, such as ethics. Timeless brand values encourage people to stick around for a long time, regardless of how many trends come and go.
Examples of Brand Values
We've compiled a list of renowned brands and their core values to make determining your brand values easier.
Adidas has been winning in the sports industry since 1949 because of the following core values:
Zappos is an online shoe and clothing retail company. It has ten rand values.
- Be humble.
- Deliver WOW through service.
- Be passionate and determined.
- Create fun and a little weirdness.
- Be adventurous, creative, and open-minded.
- Build a positive team and family spirit.
- Do more with less.
- Build open and honest relationships with communication.
- Pressure growth and learning.
- Embrace and drive change.
Shopify aims to make e-commerce better for everyone. Their core values are:
- Humbleness. Shopify believes in putting egos aside and doing what's better for everyone.
- Listen and learn. They listen and know about their users' problems to solve them.
- Creating clarity.
- Helping their merchants grow globally regardless of where they are from.
How to Discover Your Brand Values?
Image taken from Strikingly’s user’s website
Some people have got it wrong about brand values thinking that companies create them. Brand values are not made. They already exist and are discovered for your business to behave according to them.
Here are some tips you can use to discover your brand values.
1. Brainstorm with Your Leadership Team
Gather your leadership team and discuss what is essential to your brand. You can consider your brand identity's elements and the problems your products or services solve and come up with keywords first. Later, you can expand those keywords into phrases.
2. "I Believe …" Exercise
Take a piece of paper and a pencil and write down the number from one to twenty-five. Now, write "I believe" beside each number. Then take your time to think about what you believe about the world. It doesn't have to be about your products or services. Widen your mind and think about your industry. Or think about the vast human topics such as family, friends, work-life balance, nature, changes in personality (do they happen or not?), etc. Think about the things that ignite that fire in your heart.
Remember, you'd want to discover those core values beyond your business's evident scope. Don't delay the process, thinking, what if your beliefs change? Because, as human beings, we evolve, and our thinking changes. But if you delay the process now, you may never truly discover your beliefs and your brand's vision, mission, and values.
3. What Change Do You Want to See?
Think about what's broken in this world. Well, besides the hearts because they cannot be fixed with products or services. Something is going on in every corner of the world which is wrong and needs to be changed. Think about the changes you want to bring to this world and what changes your products or services are bringing.
4. Think About the Legacy
Ask yourself, how do your business's actions, products, or services affect your client's children or grandchildren? For instance, as a business consultant, you help others grow their companies and achieve their career goals. Through that, you're showing people related to your client that entrepreneurship is practical and you don't need any validation to start working on your entrepreneurship dream.
5. What Bothers You?
If you're having difficulty listing your "I believe …" statements, try the flip side of it. Think about the things that infuriate you. Think back about the things someone said to you, and in a split second, you disagreed.
Once you have a list of all the things you disagree with, you can flip them around. For example, you heard someone saying it's okay to experiment with medicines on animals, and you completely disagreed with their statement. You can flip this around and write that you stand against animal cruelty.
6. What Do Your Customers Value?
Run a survey, and ask your customers what's important to them. Determining your brand values will become easier when you know what your customers value. If you've already discovered, you can compare your business's morals with your customers and see if they match.
7. Look at Your Favorite Brands
Make a list of your favorite brands, their values, and their qualities. Use that as a guide to discovering your brand values.
8. Clear Your Mind
Ensure your mind is clear of any disturbances when you implement these tips. Any disruption or unrelated thoughts can divert your mind and suppress the ideas you're about to generate.
9. Learn From Your Experiences
Think about the unpleasant experiences you had with a business. Ask yourself what your company can do to ensure none of your consumers go through what you experienced.
Your brand values are the heart of your company's personality. They determine what people think and talk about your brand behind your back. Further, your brand values tell the consumers whether your brand resonates with their beliefs. Core values represent that behind your brand stands a human being who can feel other people’s miseries and happiness.