Effective Brand Building | Discover Your Brand: A Do-It-Yourself Branding Guide For Business Owners
Effective Brand Building | Branding is one of the most important elements of running a business, and it is just as important for small businesses as it is for large corporations. A strong brand effectively conveys what your business does, how it does it, and at the same time builds trust and credibility. Your brand lives in everyday interactions with your clients, the images you share on social networks, the content of your marketing materials, and in your blog posts you publish on your website. Large corporations spend millions on building their brands, but the ones that stick in our minds are based on simple concepts which have a creative spark and oftentimes don’t require unlimited budgets.
The benefits that a strategically defined brand can bring are the same as when people fall in love with each other. When clients connect emotively, it leads to loyalty, advocacy and can even protect your price in times when competitors rely on promotional discounts to drive sales. Here are some guidelines for building a strong brand that positions your small business clearly and effectively in your niche, and helps attract repeat business and referrals.
Know Who Your Potential Clients Are | Effective Brand Building
You have to understand who your potential clients are in order to build lasting relationships with them. The worst thing you can do is try to be all things to all people. Consider who you’re targeting your services at and how those services will resonate with them. Your existing clients may skew toward certain demographic or socioeconomic groups. They may have a particular problem, interest or need in common. Your brand should connect with these people.
Understand Your Business | Effective Brand Building
Create an easy-to-understand marketing message that tells your clients what’s in it for them. Clearly explain the benefits of doing business with you. Review your products or the service your business offers, define the space in the market it occupies and research the emotive and rational needs and concerns of your clients. Your brand character should promote your business, connect with your target audience and differentiate you in the market. Do your research. Learn the needs, habits and desires of your current and potential clients. And don’t rely on what you think they think. Know what they think.
Find Your Voice | Effective Brand Building
What you say is important, but don’t overlook how you say it. Your company’s voice is the language and personality you and your employees will use to communicate your branding message to your existing and potential clients. This voice should be applied to all written communication and incorporated in the visual imagery of all materials, online and off. Successful brands speak with a unique voice. Think about the brands you admire – what makes them unique? Is your brand friendly? Be conversational. Is it ritzy? Be more formal.
Be Consistent | Effective Brand Building
Many small businesses mistakenly change their messaging depending on their audience. This can confuse your existing and potential clients. To build and maintain a strong brand, every element of your brand should be as good as your product or service and you must be consistent in presenting your brand. Use the same color scheme, logo placement, look and feel throughout. From business cards and logo to email newsletters and brick-and-mortar signage, all of your digital and printed communications and sales materials should look, feel and sound like they come from the same source.
Have Great Products And Services | Effective Brand Building
Word of mouth is often a small businesses greatest lead generator, so having great products and services that people talk about is a vital part of your brand and why you are in business. Even the most outgoing and charming small business owner is not going to succeed in bringing clients back, unless the product or service they provide delivers and exceeds expectations. Some companies stop focusing on building great products and services when they become successful. This is a mistake. Even a strong brand will fail when it creates average or below average products or services.
Focus On Relationship Building | Effective Brand Building
The money is in your relationships. People can become your brand’s ambassadors – spreading your ideas and brand to their own networks. Spend time growing relationships with such people. People refer business to those they can vouch for, those who they know, like, trust and will go the extra mile. Build relationships that matter and surround yourself with people who you can learn and grow from.