Easy Business Branding Guide | The Ultimate Guide To Big Shot Branding For Small Businesses On A Budget
Easy Business Branding Guide | Small business owners often believe that branding is something only big corporations need. However, with small businesses accounting for as much as 95-99% of private sector entities in majority of countries throughout the world, branding is vitally important for small businesses to be able to stand out and grab the attention of potential clients. Although 87% of small business owners say it’s important for clients to perceive their brands in a positive light, only 26% of them say they devoted a good chunk of time to branding during the startup stage of their businesses.
A strong and recognizable brand is equally important for businesses both big and small in today’s digital world, but developing a visual identity that differentiates you from the competition can be costly for many businesses starting out. It’s one thing to have your logo designed and to print your first set of business cards. But actively building a strong business brand? That’s something entirely different.
Stand Out | Easy Business Branding Guide
Standing out means being different. If your brand is going to be strong, you have to be able to determine what it is that makes what you do unique. What differentiates you from others in your niche? Are you the innovative maverick in your industry? Or the experienced, reliable one? Is your product the high-cost, high-quality option, or the low-cost, high-value option? You can’t be everything to everyone.
Know Your Stuff | Easy Business Branding Guide
Research your audience – are you selling to a specific type of person, age group, gender etc. Define your target audience and then just stick to it. This sounds like a cliche but it’s amazing how many small businesses don’t clearly define their audience or their interests clearly from the get-go. Without it, you have no focus to then be able to create briefs.
Create A Voice to Accompany Your Message | Easy Business Branding Guide
It’s not just what you say, but how you say it. Your company’s voice is the language and personality you and your employees will use to communicate your branding message and engage with your existing and potential clients. Not only does this voice deliver the core of your branding message, but it also creates an overall image for your business that goes beyond past the message itself and makes you unique.
Be Consistent | Easy Business Branding Guide
Actively building your brand requires thorough consistency. You need to repeatedly send the same messages, use the same visual elements and deliver the same positive outcomes for your clients. Remember, the foundation of your brand is your logo; your website, packaging and promotional materials, all of which should clearly feature your logo, communicate your brand. Design templates and create brand standards for your marketing materials. Use the same color scheme, logo placement, look and feel throughout.
Be True To Your Brand | Easy Business Branding Guide
Although this may sound obvious, you’d be amazed how many small businesses ruin relationships with their clients by failing to keep their promises. Happy clients who feel good about your business are your best source of referrals. At the end of the day, your clients won’t return to you, let alone refer you to someone else if you don’t deliver on your brand promise. So make sure you aren’t making promises that you can’t keep – whether you run a pizza business and pledge to deliver within 30 minutes, or are a painting contractor who promises to start a job on a Monday at 9:00 AM sharp. Stand by your word.
Build A Community | Easy Business Branding Guide
A successful brand is one that is trusted and respected by its clients – building a strong community online and off can help you accomplish this. Small businesses have many opportunities to build online and offline communities. For example, you can build online communities by engaging with your clients on Twitter, Facebook, your small business blog, on Instagram, or on other social networks. Offline participation in community activities such as local events, fundraisers, charities, as well as hosting your own events such as workshops or loyal client events, can all help you build community and extend the trust you’ve earned to your brand.
Look, Listen, And Adapt | Easy Business Branding Guide
Markets change, economies fluctuate, and the needs of your clients and target audiences will evolve and transform over time. Successful small business brands will look, listen and adapt to those inevitable changes. As you move forward, make sure you’re continually measuring the reactions of your potential clients to your brand. Watch for their discussions on social networks and blogs and pay attention to sales figure movements. When you notice some elements of your branding not delivering, tweak them.