Business Branding Mistakes | Six Branding Bloopers That Are Sabotaging Your Sales
Business Branding Mistakes | Branding is incredibly important for all entrepreneurs that want to grow and sustain their businesses for the long term. However, it can be quite challenging for a small business to create an effective brand because of a limited budget, sparse resources, people and time. Imagining the level of investment that’s gone into building Coca-Cola’s, Nike’s, or Apple’s iconic images can make the mere thought of kicking off your own branding initiative seem scary and overwhelming.
Branding is one of the most important elements of running a business, large or small, retail or B2B. But what makes a brand? The foundation of your brand is your logo. Your website, social media profiles, packaging, and promotional materials, all of which should feature your logo, communicate your brand. If your branding is generic, confusing, inconsistent, or otherwise sub-par, you can easily damage your business’s credibility and ruin your chance for success. Let’s look at some of the most common branding mistakes that could cripple your business, and a few effective ways to avoid them.
Get The Name Right From The Get-Go | Business Branding Mistakes
A strong brand is easily recognizable, and recognition begins with the business name. The name is vitally important to brand recognition and it’s crucial you get it right the first time, because changing your name or logo can do more damage down the road than good. Your business name will appear on products, business cards, letterheads, marketing materials, website, social networks, and everywhere else – in print and online – to represent your business and the products and services you’re providing.
Define A Set Target Audience | Business Branding Mistakes
In order to boost your visibility in the marketplace, it’s essential that you are specific with the types of clients you’re going after. Remember, you can’t be everything to everyone or you’ll be nothing to no one. A small business should never try to appeal to “the general public.” Instead, you should have a strong point of view that grabs the early adopters and influencers of your target audience. In other words, before you start sketching a business logo or writing blog posts for your website, you have to first be able to clearly define who your ideal client is.
Develop A Consistent Visual Identity | Business Branding Mistakes
So you know that your business needs to develop a brand, but what exactly does that mean? When creating your brand identity, you’ll want to establish clearly defined guidelines. Think real life as well as online. This encompasses everything from your location and personal appearance to your online presence, from your website to your social media profiles. Design templates and create brand standards for your digital and print marketing materials. Use the same color scheme, logo placement, look and feel throughout to ensure consistency.
Meet And Exceed Expectations | Business Branding Mistakes
There’s no point claiming to be the most innovative startup in your particular niche if you don’t spend the most on research and development and launch the best new products. Some businesses even stop focusing on building great products and services when they become successful. This is a mistake. Keep in mind that even an iconic brand will suffer when it starts selling average or below average products or services. Your clients expect a consistency between what you say and the way you act. They will figure out if the two do not match quickly, and you will lose their trust in a way that can never be regained.
Stand Out! | Business Branding Mistakes
Small business owners should find inspiration from other brand and use their success as a model to grow. However, one of the worst things you can do is to mindlessly adapt to every trend, even the ones that have no relevance to your brand. At the end of the day, standing out means being different. How are you going to stand out if your branding is just like everyone else’s? If your brand is going to be strong, you need to be able to determine what it is that makes what you do unique and find a way to communicate that to your potential clients.
Find Your Voice | Business Branding Mistakes
Your company’s brand lives in everyday interactions with your potential clients, the images you share, the videos you create, the messages you post on your website, the content of your sales materials, and in your posts on social networks. A strong brand communicates what a business does, how it does it, and also builds trust and credibility. What you say is important, but don’t forget the way you say it. Your company’s “voice” is the language and personality you and your employees will use to deliver your branding message and reach your customers, and it should be used across all platforms and materials consistently.