The concept of building brands may seem like something restricted to big names like Pepsi or Walmart. However, the process is probably simpler than you think and just as important for small businesses.
Why Branding Matters
According to Entrepreneur, business branding is the marketing practice of creating a name, symbol or design that identifies and differentiates a product from other products. With just a few elements, your brand communicates who you are, where you’re heading, and how you hope to be perceived.
No matter what kind of business you run, building a brand is a highly effective way to stand out from the crowd and develop a unique presence both on and offline. A strong, unique identity will give you the opportunity to make an impression on potential customers even before they commit to your company.
Tips for Building a Strong Brand
Ready to get started? Here are our tips to engage your audience through your brand’s image.
1. Create a Great Product and Service Experience
All the marketing and outreach you do will always lead back to what you sell, whether that’s a product or a service. The customer’s experience should always be at the core of your brand. People like to share outstanding service. Put in the work from the outset and your reputation can grow just through word of mouth.
To see how you’re doing, make sure to check in and follow up with customers . Consider creating a profile on a platform like TrustPilot where customers can leave their reviews. Then, set clear success metrics that will help you measure exactly what needs to be improved if necessary.
2. Build Community Relationships
When it comes to customer loyalty, personal connections help to develop a strong customer base.
Remember to stay focused. Especially online, zero in on the social media platforms where you can add something unique and valuable to the conversation.. There are endless ways to get your name out there, from blogging to social media to email marketing. Check out our advice on free online advertising for more details about each major social media platform so you can decide where to focus on building your presence.
Once you’ve narrowed your options down, aim to be as consistent as possible. Post trustworthy content regularly, stay on topic, and interact with the users who respond to your content. Once you start recognizing their names, chances are they’ve already remembered yours.
3. Design a Creative Name and Logo
To be easily recognizable and memorable, it’s worth spending time creating an original name and logo for your business. A design and just a word or two can speak volumes for your entire business. Don’t hesitate to take some creative risks, especially as you’re starting out. You never know–they may lead you to unexpected success!
4. Find Your Tone
Once you’ve gotten to know your customers, think about the elements you want to incorporate in your company’s tone. Will you lean toward a more professional, informative sound or a casual, playful one? Will you incorporate trending topics or offer timeless advice? Experiment and refine your strategy based on your followers’ feedback. Above all though, make sure to remain authentic. Would you follow a company who continuously self-promotes instead of sharing valuable information?
5. Defend Your Mission
Your values should shape and define and your brand. Standing for core principles and establishing a mission will help you communicate clearly and consistently with your audience. You’ll have the chance to show your potential customers what you believe in and how you’re taking the initiative to get there.
For example, instead of discounting your products or services across the board, it might be more rewarding to create loyalty programs and offer promotional products to the customers who relate to your mission and keep coming back.
For more business marketing advice and tips from our experts, head over to the SmartBiz Small Business Blog!