In the world of business, there is much talk about brands - how to build them, how to grow them, how to take them global, etc. And, for many small businesses, there is perhaps a temptation to think that building a brand comes later down the line, once the business is established and the focus is not simply on getting cash in the bank. But the reality is that building a brand matters, no matter how small the business is in the early days. Every business has a brand, and over time that business builds its brand equity. It’s what creates the emotional connection with your customers; it’s what helps to get people talking about your business and the products you make and services you provide. It’s precisely that emotional brand connection that keeps your customers coming back time and again, choosing your product and service offerings above others in the marketplace. There is no perfect future time to start thinking about how to build your brand, the time is now. Ask yourself some key questions. What is the feeling you are trying to convey to your customers when they encounter the brand in their daily lives? Can it inspire them? Can it evoke a particular memory? Once you have the answers to these type of questions, you are on your way to building your own strong brand equity, capable of lasting well after the critical startup phase.