Now that we’ve talked about what a small business brand is — and is not – you know how important it is to have a set of values and attributes for your brand in order to create the right associations for potential customers to make about your business.

But what if you’re not sure what you want those values and associations to be? If you’re feeling a little lost when searching for inspiration with which to create your small business brand, you might want to try looking a little closer to home.

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People sure do throw around the term “brand” a lot these days. They often use it interchangeably to describe a business’s logo, or the business itself. But branding is so much more than either of these things.

Your small business’ brand is made up of a lot of different elements that the public comes to associate closely with your company. These brand elements can include things like your name, your logo, your slogan, your company colors (Tiffany’s aqua blue), a certain sound (think NBC’s chimes), a tone of voice (LivingSocial’s signature snark), or even a smell (walk by a Subway restaurant and you know it). Branding is the process through which you make decisions about your brand elements and take steps to link them to your business in your audience’s mind.

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