Module 4 - Create Your Brand

4.1 How to Define Your Brand's Core Values

Defining your brand is like a journey of business self-discovery. It can be difficult, tedious and uncomfortable. But, since you’ve completed your product research and have already ordered a product sample for testing, you should have all the information needed to define your brand.

Now, to properly define the brand value, you should fully understand what customers like and dislike about the top brands in your market. And, don’t rely on what you think they think. You need to be sure that this is what they think.

Learn From the Best: Amazon’s Mission Statement

A good example of a company that is clear about its core values and lives by it is Amazon.

Amazon’s mission statement is:

To be earth’s most customer centric company; to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online.

And when you review the Amazon leadership principles you’ll notice its absolute dedication and daily commitment to solving its customer problems through innovation and simplicity.

At first, Amazon applied that mission statement by being a seller on their own platform. Like any other e-commerce website, just at a bigger scale.

But early on, Amazon realized that the e-commerce retail marketplaces were offering only an extremely limited selection of products and that consumers and sellers were desperate for a platform to solve this problem. So, it made a bold decision to provide a solution and allow third-party sellers to compete against its own retail category managers. And, as we previously discussed, to ensure that consumers trusted these new brands, Amazon developed one of the best return policies on the internet called A-to-Z Guarantee Protection for third-party sellers.

In his 2014 Letter to Shareholders, Amazon’s founder and CEO Jeff Bezos wrote the following about this move:

“It was more convenient for customers, and within a year, it accounted for 5% of units. Today, more than 40% of our units are sold by more than two million third-party sellers worldwide. Customers ordered more than two billion units from sellers in 2014.”

And Bezos continues:

Customers were initially drawn by our fast-growing selection of Amazon-sold products at great prices with a great customer experience. By then allowing third parties to offer products side-by-side, we became more attractive to customers.

Now, Amazon has leveraged its initial successes and has in recent years expanded its brand offerings in new geographies and businesses such as Amazon Prime, Amazon Fresh and much more.

The lesson here is that Amazon started with defining its brand. It created a mission statement that reflected its core values and then continued to live by it as the company grew bigger and bigger. This is something that, at a much smaller scale, you’ll need to do also.

Write Down the Core Values for Your Brand

Think about what values your brand will convey. Start by taking out a piece of paper, and answering these questions:

  1. What are your personal values?
  2. What do you want your brand to stand for?
  3. Can you align your personal values with your brand values?
  4. How can you differentiate yourself from your competitors?

These are just a couple of questions to get you started. For more inspiration, check out this post with over 100 core values of the brands that you know and love. It’s a great place to get some ideas for your own brand.

Ultimately, you want to answer this one question: what do you want your brand to stand for?  

Let's Learn How To Define Your Brand Strategy!

Now that you have defined your brand’s core values, let’s take it one step further: we’ll teach you 3 best practices in private label branding that you can use for your brand strategy!