Hold on! Before you start choosing fonts and securing website URL’s, there’s a step you must take before any of that. Before you order those business cards and hire a virtual assistant you must create a mission statement.
A mission statement is a formal statement of the aims and values of a company, organization, or individual according to Google. Let’s break that down.
Mission Statements Explain Why the Company Exists
A company’s mission can be as simple as to serve hot food out the window in less than 50 seconds. Or, it can be to change the way people experience a drive-thru purchase and influence all ages to enjoy fast and convenient foods on the go. While these may not feel like life-altering missions, they may very well be to a fast-food chain.
Knowing why you are doing something lays the foundation for how it happens. Going back to the why helps make financial, legal, ethical, and other decisions easier. The mission is a sort of anchor that keeps the ship from drifting out to sea. Without it, there could be trouble down the line.
Mission Statements Explain How the Company Does Things
Once it’s clear why the company exists, the how the company does what it exists to do matters just as much. Remember Dick’s restaurant in the last post? Their mission could read something like this- To provide a delightfully entertaining experience to guests looking for a light-hearted experience while they dine. That explains why Dick’s does what it does. Here’s an example of how they may choose to do that. By providing delicious, easy-to-prepare foods in an atmosphere of genuine sarcasm, humor, and jest. This explains how they intend to carry out the why.
Mission Statements Explain Who the Company Intends to Serve
We can’t be all things to all people. Brands do not attract everyone. Even companies like Starbucks and McDonalds do not try to attract everyone on the planet. Who you are targeting is important and should be in alignment with why you build your brand and how you deliver goods and services. To whom they are going to is an important part of your mission statement.
Your target customer is sometimes referred to as an avatar. An example of one person who, given all your attention, would be the exact person you want to serve. It can be as specific as their age, income level, education, gender, marital status, and more. The more you drill down who you want to serve the easier it will be to build a brand they will love. For example, someone with oily skin is not going to be attracted to, nor should they be, products that promote oil production. Knowing that they will not be part of the emphasis of your branding helps you focus on people with dry skin who are your target customer. Then you can target that market with your full intention.
Building a mission statement that covers why you want to be in business, how you want to serve your customer, and who that customer is will help you make branding decisions that are on-point and convey the right message to the right audience.
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