We are pretty sure that you’ve heard this before… your brand is so much more than your logo. But some folks still struggle with understanding just how important it is to build your brand, stay true to your brand attributes, and uphold your brand promise. And in no place, is this more accurate than in the emerging cannabis industry. Carving out what your brand stands for, the appropriate tone and visuals associated with your brand, is what will set your cannabis company apart from the competitors. And what will hopefully help your brand succeed in what is quickly becoming a crowded marketplace.
What is a brand? Definitions of a brand vary. The Dictionary of Brand’s definition says, “a person’s perception of a product, service, experience, or organization.” We like to think about a brand as the heart and soul of the company, and how customers connect to the experiences associated with the brand, its promise and its products.
So if a brand is intangible and infinite, then how do you develop a strong one? One thing to remember is that it doesn’t happen overnight; building a strong brand takes ongoing effort that will result in long-term relationships with your customers. Having a celebrity name behind a cannabis company certainly doesn’t hurt. It’s probably not too difficult to describe Snoop Dogg’s brand as it may relate to his company Leafs by Snoop. According to a blog by the design agency responsible for the logo and packaging, “they wanted to capture Snoop’s unique personality and style, but also develop a brand that appeals to a wide audience.”
But you don’t have to be a celebrity to be successful in the cannabis industry. It is likely that Snoop Dogg and his team went through the same branding process that your company could as well. Start with the end in mind; ask yourself and your team, where do you see your business going? What are your goals? How is your business going to have an impact? Define your brand’s purpose and the impact that you can have in the cannabis industry as a starting point.
The next steps really dig deeper into the fabric of your brand. How can you position your brand? What is the unique impression that you own in the consumer’s mind?
What is your brand promise? You need to know the core benefit that your products have for your consumers. We wouldn’t be surprised if in Leafs by Snoop’s brand promise it included something along the lines of ‘helping people relax, have fun and know they are getting Snoop-approved (and perhaps tested) marijuana.’ Ask yourself, what value is your brand providing to your customers? As your company grows, it’s essential to provide reasons and examples why your customers should believe your brand promise. That credibility which you continue to showcase with your brand helps to build trust and in the long run, customer loyalty.
Walking through these essential branding steps is key to build an authentic brand and an intricate part of your company’s competitive strategy. Consumers are becoming more brand loyal as the cannabis market grows. If you can define the brand value and place that your products fit into your customers lives, build on that authenticity, each and every day, your brand will be on a path for success.
Next up in our blog, Cannabis Packaging Design Trends. We’ll post that one soon.