The right kind of branding has a very important role to play for small businesses as it does for bigger, well-established names. In fact, a number of large corporates try to brand themselves more like niche firms in order to create greater appeal to consumers that veer towards independent brands. Here are some tips and ideas that will help you develop a distinctive and solid brand identity.
Most small business owners today recognise that branding is crucial to their business; what's interesting is that a surprising majority of these people aren't aware of why this is so. They recognise there is a very tangible link between a strong branding and a successful business; and most aspire to build brands that will be an indication of their success.
They realise fully well that branding is far more than just having a recognisable logo and that it's about how their business is perceived in the market. But too few actually realise that all successful brands have their branding at the very core of the businesses. Branding is essentially a way of defining your company & business to yourself, your external audiences and your team. It could also be called the business identity, but only with reference to when it embodies the core of what your business and its values are and not just what it sounds and looks like.
How you benefit from strong branding
Modern day customers are extremely savvy and they can easily see through most of the efforts companies make to charm, spin or gloss their ways to a sale. If you want to build a solid brand for your business you should aim to ensure that your customers connect with your brand on an emotional level and because they share the same beliefs and values of your brand.
This approach will lead to better brand differentiation and increased sales. Aside from this, it leads to advocacy, loyalty and can also protect your price when your competitors are focusing largely on discounts and offers to drive sales. In fact, this can also become the perfect platform from which to expand your range or offering. Here are some things you can do to build a solid brand for your small business:
- Start by defining your branding - Your brand's character should effectively promote your business, and connect with your customer base as well as differentiate your business in the market.
- Keep in mind that your brand has an individual character - When you're building a brand it's important that you maintain its individuality and don't try to emulate any other more successful brands in the market.
- Consider what is actually driving your business - As mentioned earlier; it's important to build an emotive brand positioning and use that to endear yourself to your customers and create a unique identity.
- Aim to build strong and lasting relationships with your customer - Even as you advertise market and target new customers in an effort to increase sales; don't sideline your existing customers. Maintain honest branding; show your customers you truly care and that you are a company driven by values.
- Be consistent when you are speaking with your customers - This will help reinforce your business' character and will also help clarify its offering so your customers know exactly what to expect from your product or service.
The main idea behind all these efforts is to carve a niche for brand in the market by creating a distinctive identity. As an independent operator, you can leverage this status to attract customers that are looking for something more authentic and original.
About the Author
Ben Fewtrell is a sought-after Business Coach, Keynote Speaker and trainer who has featured in Virgin’s Inflight Magazine and Entertainment Portal, SKY Business and “Secrets of Top Business Builders Exposed”. He is also the host of the popular Business Brain Food Podcast where he interviews leading experts on anything and everything business.