How to Conduct a Brand Check-In

Developing your brand isn’t just a one-and-done deal. A business brand is like a living, breathing entity that requires ongoing care and maintenance. Just as you make adjustments and refinements in your life when things aren’t working, the same goes for a business brand. Thankfully, conducting a brand check-in doesn’t need to be time-consuming and tedious. Once you learn the steps, brand check-ins can be a productive and streamlined process that brings your team clarity.

Revisiting Brand Identity

At the heart of your branding strategy is the development of your brand ethos — your core identity. If you’ve already spent time discovering your fundamental characteristics (e.g., strong, open-minded, etc.), values (e.g., empowering communities, upholding honesty, etc.) and tone (e.g., casual, accessible, authoritative), it’s time to see whether that ethos shines through your content. Social platforms, website, print materials and anything else with your brand’s name should align with your brand ethos and reveal the true spirit of your business. Your vision and mission statements should guide the direction you take in this process. Brainstorm ways to make your identity even more visible.

Ask: Are there things about your social posts, web design, or customer experience that could use an update?

Analyzing Market Positioning

Once your brand ethos is clear and well-communicated, it’s time to re-examine your market position. Is your business truly reaching and speaking to the audience it intends to attract? Or are you slightly off-center, dealing with a mismatch between market and message that translates to lower revenue and fewer repeat customers? Conducting some user research and looking at any reviews you have can determine if you are making the kind of impression you want to make. Pay attention to recurring confusion or complaints, as this will reveal where your brand is missing the mark in its delivery.

Building a Future Vision

After assessing your brand and making necessary changes, it’s important to conduct a vision for where you’re headed. Again reflecting back on your mission and vision, create a few long-term goals to start working toward. How can you take what’s working and amplify it further? How can you leave behind what’s not working to create more space and time in your weekly branding tasks?

Stage 4 of the Nine Labs Approach covers these aspects of branding and more. For more guidance on up-leveling your startup, download the free Startup Roadmap.