When you hear the word “brand”, you probably think of companies like Nike, McDonalds, or Starbucks - and rightfully so. These are very successful brands that are known in most corners of the world.
You might not, however, associate the word “brand” with a small business. Many small business owners think that branding is something that only big companies do. They may also think that their particular business doesn’t provide the types of products or services that lend themselves to brand recognition.
This type of thinking is not only incorrect, but it can also lead to stunted growth and eliminate the possibility of long term success.
What Is Branding?
Your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them who you are and how your market sees you. A successfully branded business benefits from brand equity, which is the perceived added value from your target group about your products or services that enables you to charge more than the competition. Starbucks is a great example of this. Because of their successful branding, most consumers see an added value in Starbucks coffee and will gladly pay more for a cup than they would at the gas station down the street.
As a small business owner, you shouldn’t view branding as a way to convince your target market to choose you over the competition. Rather, you should view branding as a way to get them to see you as the only business who can solve the problem they’re facing.
What Is Your Brand?
Defining your brand can seem like a daunting task, but doing so will not only put your business on the path toward long term success, but it will also give you a better understanding of who you are and where you want to be.
Brands fail when they try to be all things to all people, and this is the mistake that’s most commonly made by small businesses. Asking yourself the following questions can help you define your brand and build your strategy.
- Who is your business and what is your mission?
- What benefits will people experience from using your products or services?
- What opinion do your existing customers have about your business?
- What qualities and philosophies do you want your target market to see in your business?
Where Do You Start?
Brand recognition doesn’t happen overnight, and like most aspects of marketing your business, you need a defined strategy that you can test and tweak until you see results. Since most brand recognition is visual, you should start by creating a logo and defining the colors, fonts, and messages you want people to remember.
After that, the next logical step is building a great looking website that incorporates these elements and then getting the message out to your target market through avenues like search engine marketing and social media. This is a task that many small business owners do not have time to tackle, which is why many choose to utilize a company that has a proven record of creating remarkable websites that are easily found through relevant Google searches.
If you’re ready to take the first steps toward building your brand, contact High Level Marketing today!