Customers must always be involved when developing a marketing or branding strategy. Yet many companies forget that. They think they can do it in a vacuum without the input of customers. When you do not care about your customers' opinions, you alienate them. Your brand story is flawed.
Should small businesses compete based on lowering their prices? Here is my personal story on why you should never do that.
A good brand story starts with authenticity. You can develop meaningful relationships with your audience by telling a story that is unique to you and at the same time, striking a chord with them. Make this your goal.