Essential Branding Tips | What is Branding? And Should Small Businesses Care?
Essential Branding Tips | So you want to start a business? Great! You’re not the only one, though. Over six million businesses are started each year, making it critical that your business stands out from the crowd. Branding is one of the most important elements of a strong business when it comes to securing the goodwill and trust of your clients, and powerful brands don’t just happen – they’re built through careful planning and extensive work. What steps are you taking to brand your company name in a memorable way?
When starting a new business, you have to appeal to your target audience in order to be successful. Your brand is the entire sum of what you do, what you excel at and the experience your clients have when doing business with you. It affects whether clients join your loyalty club and refer you to friends — or don’t bother with you again. Get smart about branding and you’ll swiftly be on track to make your brand a household name! But what can you do to boost the appeal of your brand – without breaking the bank?
Start By Defining Your Brand | Essential Branding Tips
Review the product or service your business offers, determine the space in the market it occupies and research the emotive and rational needs and concerns of your audience. You have to look at your business as a potential client would. What sets your business apart from others in your niche? What makes you different and original? While it may be tempting to offer clients a wide menu of products and services, it’s vital to keep your brand focused. Specializing in one thing enables your small business to stand out in the market.
Target Whom You Want To Serve | Essential Branding Tips
As discussed above, your small business can’t do everything; likewise, it probably can’t serve everyone. Who would be interested in your products or services? Test groups and focus groups can help you see what clients think and feel about your new business, and whether your products appeal to a specific demographic. Your clients may skew toward a particular demographic or socioeconomic groups. They may share a particular problem, interest or need. Your brand has to connect with these people.
Create A Logo And Design Scheme | Essential Branding Tips
It’s crucial to have many different ways to communicate your message and style to your potential clients, so you have to have both verbal and visual brand representations for your company. That means you need a logo and color scheme that matches your verbal message, and produces a cohesive presentation for your materials and website. From business cards and logo to email newsletters and brick-and-mortar signage, all of your printed communications and sales materials should look, feel and sound like they come from the same source. The more consistent all of your branding is, the more people will begin to remember your brand.
Have Your Own Voice | Essential Branding Tips
It’s not just what you say, but how you say it. Your brand’s voice is the language, tone and rhythm that you use in all your communications. Create a voice for your company that effectively conveys the nature of your brand. This voice should be applied to all written communication and incorporated in the visual imagery of all materials, online and off. Your marketing pieces, both online and print, should all have the same message, and should be created with the same voice that you use for all other communications. This includes your website, blog, social networking campaigns and written communication.
Build Community Around What You Do | Essential Branding Tips
In our digital age, it’s both easier and harder than ever to reach your clients. They’re only a click away, but they may never meet you face to face. A successful brand is one that is trusted and respected by clients – building a strong community online and off can help you accomplish this. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do this. In fact, many successful brands concentrate almost exclusively in online and offline community building as opposed to traditional advertising. Don’t dress up your offering and raise expectations that result in broken promises, create trust with honest branding — be clear who your company is and be true to the values that drive it every day.