I recently read an interesting article discussing how packaging reflects a company’s values. The article pointed out that, over the past several years, a large American company has consistently been criticized for their packing and shipping methods. Often, a single item arrives in a very large cardboard box leaving consumers wondering, who chose this packaging method?! Upon further reflection, however, should consumers be surprised? The aforementioned company has built its reputation on high volume, high efficiency, and low-cost delivery. On-time delivery is a core company value, not conservative or user-friendly packaging methods.

After reading the article, I began thinking about the importance of defining your personal brand and, in turn, how your company’s values are reflected in the branding choices that you make.

Defining Your Brand

As a business leader, you are responsible for establishing your own brand based on your values, personality, and unique skills. In a previous article titled Are You Focused Enough on Your Personal Brand?, I fully discuss the steps that you can take towards defining and leveraging your personal brand. They include:

  1. Asking the important questions, such as what you do better than anyone else, why do clients come to you, and what excites you more than anything?
  2. Setting and prioritizing the values that drive your personally and professionally.
  3. Defining your personal brand in everything you do.

When asking and answering these questions, it is critical that you answer honestly. This task should be challenge; give yourself plenty of time to go through the process. The key to a personal brand is authenticity.

Creating Your Brand Values

Once you establish your personal brand, consider how it is reflected in your brand’s values. Your values should be identified and then ignored. They should be seen as a daily inspiration to guide decision-making, marketing, and consumer service. When your brand and core values fully align, your product will be naturally attractive to customers with whom you share common values.

Outward Expression of Your Brand

After defining your personal and corporate brand, how can you share that with the outside world? Let’s go back and look at our packaging example from above. Here are some things to consider:

  1. Packaging Style: Do you really need to ship your product in a large box? Could you use a padded envelope or smaller box?
  2. Filler: There are many eco-friendly products to choose from, including recycled crinkled paper or packaging paper.
  3. Branding on the Packaging: Include your company logo or motto on the box for added advertising or referrals.
  4. A Personalized Note: Many companies are now including a hand-written thank you note or product information.

By carefully banding your products, consumers learn what is behind your product; your personal and company’s values. If you need more suggestions on defining, evaluating, and implementing your company’s core values, contact us.