If you’re wondering how your small business can stand out in the increasingly competitive marketplace, I have one word for you: branding.
You might think that branding is really for the big businesses with the big ideas and even bigger budgets. But branding is just as important for small companies –maybe more so. These days, opponents can clone your merchandise, steal your notions or duplicate your own services. The 1 thing they can not replicate? Your brand. It is unequivocally yours.
Simply put, your brand is how customers feel when they think of you. You can imagine it as your standing. Things like an wonderful emblem, friendly staff, dependable products and a perfect site can help people form a favorable impression about your small business. But to succeed, you need to start with an honest vision of exactly what your organization represents.
Whether you want it or not, if you have a small company, you have a brand. The best way to build that new can make or break your success.
Building Your Brand
A brand is founded on the core facts of your company. During branding, you leverage these core concepts into an emotion your customers can associate with.
When it comes to getting off their brands the ground, small companies we see on 99designstypically start with the next building blocks.
Define your mission and target audience. You should be able to tell people in one sentence what you do and that you do it for. Once you have that nailed down, work on a 60-second elevator pitch.
Contemplate how you differ from the competition. Perhaps you’re the tech-savvy maverick on your industry. Or maybe you’re the long-established, one. Clarify how you stand out from the contest. You can give a read on Adam Arnold’s branding article for a clearer idea.
Produce a powerful visual identity. Your logo is the keystone of your own brand, so take some time to get it correctly. When you have decided on a title, inform your artists on your brand and permit them to interpret those core concepts to a memorable logo.
Create a fresh voice. Giving your new characteristics–like outgoing, entertaining and quirky–will help you communicate regularly and connect with your audience. As a small business owner, don’t be afraid to let your personality shine. Before you apply your corporate identity into each of your other substances, run your logo and secret messages by members of your target audience. Do they know the benefits you are communicating?
Invest in advertising materials. Ask designers to leverage the look and feel of your logo to extend your brand. The upcoming crucial customer touchpoints will probably include your stationery, social websites cover photographs, website, t-shirts and brochures.
Be persistent. Branding is all about implementing your values to what you do, obviously and consistently. From the way you answer the phone to the look of your Twitter avatar, what you do should map back to your own brand’s core theories.
While building a brand might be easier and more affordable than you envisioned, it still does require some time and cash (that is something most small business owners lack). So why is it worth the effort? Here are a few ways building your brand can help your small business succeed.
Stick out from the competition. When clients have a lot of options, branding helps them make a determination. Your brand should highlight your special virtues and let customers know what they can expect from your small business.
Build credibility. In case your logo looks like it had been thrown together without much care, clients will expect the same out of your services and products. To establish trust, you need to look the part.
Increase the value of your offering. There is a reason people are prepared to pay 75% more for that Coke than a generic model of cola. Branding elevates your offering from a commodity to a exceptional product, distinguishing you from a discounted manufacturer.
Make your small business look larger. Sure, you may run your business out of your own kitchen –but your clients don’t need to understand that. If they do they won’t be likely to compensate you fairly. When customers emotionally connect to your brand, it contributes to brand loyalty and trust.
In a business climate where the internet, social media and technologies produce a good deal of static, it’s crucial to develop a clear new voice to cut through the noise. Building a brand is an exciting procedure. Love it and the rewards it brings.