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Updated on April 20, 2023.
Why being authentic is your greatest asset?
Working in branding, you quickly realize that all the powerful brands are authentic.
Is it necessary to be authentic?
And if so, why?
What is the point of authenticity?
Success leaves clues. Real differentiation is noticeable.
Assuming your difference is respected.
By assuming your difference:
• you will spark curiosity in the eyes of your audience.
• you will allow word-of-mouth to spread.
• you will force the respect of your market players.
In the end, these are the benefits of aligning your strategy, positioning, and brand identity.
Authenticity: what does it mean?
As individuals, we are all unique. We are all made up of different experiences and backgrounds. We all have different backgrounds, different origins, and different thoughts.
It is these differences that allow us to exchange value between humans.
As a brand, it's the same thing. Your brand has its origin and its own past experiences. A mission of its own. And so on.
These are the elements that make it unique and give it value.
To be authentic is to take ownership of and assume these different elements.
To be authentic is to accept to be yourself and embrace your difference.
One could almost say that branding is a way to assert one's authenticity.
Being yourself means abandoning the idea of trying to please everyone.
Being yourself does not mean turning into a perfect version of yourself.
Being yourself means learning to listen to yourself and learning to be true to yourself.
Your brand has values, beliefs, goals, and limiting thoughts.
To become yourself is to question yourself. It's an exercise that puts your brand's beliefs, goals, values, and limiting thoughts into perspective.
It is a work of definition that allows you to break the patterns in which your brand has been locked. This work will enable you to remove the fears and protective shells that your brand has built over time.
The objective here is to know what you want to keep and what you want to remove from your brand. That is when your brand can be itself in an enlightening way.
The brand strategy contains the methods that allow your brand to be itself.
This step will allow your brand to stay on track by defining its mission, vision, values, name, loyalty system, trends, etc.
Embrace your difference.
This is the next step. Embracing your difference, and accepting to be yourself, means putting into practice what was defined in the strategy phase.
Choose your positioning based on the value you bring to your targets and what you believe in.
Your objective: to allow your brand to provide value while remaining pure.
One can't go without the other.
To be different without being authentic is to forget yourself trying to shine in your market at all costs.
To be authentic without exploiting your difference is to miss opportunities because you are afraid to accept yourself.
The only solution: combine the two.
Define your brand in depth. Be sure to complete the strategy steps (i.e., be yourself) to align strategy, positioning, and identity (i.e., assume your difference).
The benefits of authenticity
By allowing your brand to be itself, it will command respect. Many will not agree with what your brand stands for, but its true fans will follow it to the world's edge.
Finding your brand's differentiating and authentic elements will help draw eyes to it. Using your difference to boost your visibility will give your brand the edge since your competitors don't.
And speaking of competition...
Being unique is also about protecting yourself from theft. No one can steal what makes your brand memorable. Many may try to copy you, but it will only strengthen the brand of origin: yours.
Your difference becomes your greatest strength. Your fans will become true ambassadors for your brand. They are the ones who will start your tight-knit community.
Your fans will give your brand stability. You'll never have to worry about being a trend that will fade away over time.
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