308 - Why you need to be brand value-driven from the start
On today's episode of the podcast I talk about the importance of having a brand from the start as well as trademarks and copyrights.
When you have a business, you need to think about the value of your brand and then help that drive your business decisions. To learn more about the technical aspects of this, I write about it in my book, Unf*ck Your Biz (unfuckyourbizbook.com). Don't have the book? I'm giving away a free chapter to go with today's episode at notavglaw.com/chapter13
This topic has been top of mind since I helped a few clients over the past several months with both buying and selling businesses. What gets people interested in buying a business is essentially the brand, maybe the systems too, but most of the time what I find is that people have their own systems. Most of the time it's the brand value of the business that they're interested in.
When we think about the business, we often think of ourselves and our own thoughts and ideas but it's really our brand awareness for others, and it can be hard to pull ourselves out of that if we are the face of the business. Having a strong brand is a shortcut to word-of-mouth marketing. This is the short-cut folks get when they buy a business, the brand is already in place if people already know what you do and it's even better when we have ownership over that.
Branding stays top of mind for me because I'm always thinking how do I uniquely position myself in the market because I'm going to want to protect that down the road. You might not be coming to it from that same lens, but you should start to to help determine how you position yourself and what makes you stand out in the market.
For example, I've been talking about changing my Instagram handle from @bradenadamdrake to @notavglaw because while I love having a personal brand and having people recognize me, growing my business and growing my team means I can't do it all on my own and we offer a large suite of services in the business. This also means we'll be better served in the long run being known as a law firm rather than just myself which is why we've been making this subtle pivot.
As I'm shifting this branding message about what makes us not average, I've changed the name of our Instagram to @notavglaw to reflect the business name. In talking with a friend about this, they said they always think of me as Unf*ck Your Biz which at first made me think that maybe I was choosing the wrong name because I already have brand awareness but then I thought it's not a problem, it's actually really powerful that when someone thinks of the term Unf*ck Your Biz they think of me and I think it's cool that I own the trademark (and hopefully I'll soon own more of the trademarks I've applied for). I'm assembling these pieces to create a larger brand with a lot of smaller assets with these other trademarks.
Even if you aren't thinking about a potential business sale right now, you need to consider how you can position your business to stand out and create a brand presence. It's valuable. You want to be different, you want to be known for something. This will help you come up with better program names if you're in the program space, maybe you're going to chance your business name if you haven't come up with one yet and once you have better names, better frameworks, better things you want to own, you're going to want to prevent others from using them. That's where trademarks come in. Intellectual property also helps us protect the names we have grown from having other people use them to have a solid foundation on which to grow our businesses.
To learn more about trademarks, copyrights and protecting your assets, grab the free chapter at notavglaw.com/chapter13
Get on the waitlist for our Trademark Quickie Searches at notavglaw.com/tmquickie