Who are some of your favorite brands or businesses right now? Is there a company out there that you really respect and trust? A business you’d choose above any other in the field?
Have you thought of one?
Good! Now think about this: what is it that you love about them? What is it about them that draws you in? What makes you want to choose them again and again? Why do you trust them?
Chances are your answers to the questions above come down to more than just a good product. You choose the brands you love and trust because of who they are and what they represent. You choose them because of what they value.
That’s why it’s so important for your brand to define and develop a list of just that: your core values. If you want your audience to stick with you because of what you value, you first have to figure out exactly what it is that you value. Developing that list will not only give your audience a sense of who you are and what you represent, it will also give your company a set of standards by which you can measure everything you do.
Creating a list of core values was one of the first big decisions we made at Campfire. We wanted to make sure we had clearly defined the things that were important to us—the things that we value to our core—before we did much else. We landed on our four core values by answering a few big questions, and we think they could help your brand do the same!
So grab a cup of coffee, get your pen and paper, and circle up with your team to talk through these questions and work towards defining your own set of core values.
Who do you want to be? What characteristics do you want to develop within your brand? Are there companies out there you admire? What is it about who they are that you love? What do you want to emulate?
What do you want to represent? When people talk about your brand, what do you want them to say? If you had to sum up in one word what your brand was about, what would that word be? At the end of the day, what is it that you want your business to be known for?
What sets you apart? What makes your business unique? What is it about your brand that makes you stand out? What is it about your company draws in an audience?
What kind of culture do you want to create? When people come to your office, how do you want them to feel? How do you want your employees to feel when they come to work? What kind environment do you want to foster?
What do you want to inspire? If you’re sitting across the table from a potential client, what do you want them to walk away with? What feeling do you want to ignite in your audience? What actions do you hope to motivate your people to take?
Got it all down? Don’t worry if your list seems long! While we recommend trying to narrow it down to four or five core values, this is just the starting point! Once you’ve got it all on paper start looking for common themes, repetitive words, or big ideas you have listed more than once. Start the conversation around those things. You’ll be surprised how quickly you’ll land on what’s truly important to your brand.