28 Sep Branding Your Local Business
“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.”
– Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO
What is a Brand?
A brand is the perception of your business that has been seared into the mind of your audience. I have identified six primary elements that help to shape your business’ brand. Understanding each of these elements and managing them is crucial to the success of any business. Most consumers in today’s market are brand loyalists and are looking to consume only from quality brands.
- Your Story – Captivate your audience by sharing with them your story. People want to connect with brands that they can relate to. Take this opportunity to tell the origin story of where your business started, and what values, motivations and passions fuel the work that you do.
- Visual Identity – Craft a strong and consistent visual presence. This includes your logo, brand imagery, videos, fonts, and color palette used throughout each consumer touchpoint.
- Products and Services – This is what sets you apart from the competition. Your products and/or services are unique to your business and will be the primary means of defining who your target audience is.
- Consumer Experiences – Subconsciously every time your audience interacts with your brand in-store, online, through social media, or using the product they bought there will be an emotional connection or general feeling. You have the opportunity to make it better. If their experience is good, they most likely will come back and/or tell others about their experience.
- Consumer Touchpoints – Website, social media, in-store, app, point-of-sale, customer service, and such like.
- Brand Voice/Personality – Every brand has a voice and this is developed over time through consistent communication. Your web copy, marketing campaigns, emails and any other communication piece should be unified in tone and attitude.
This might sound overwhelming to think about. I know, it is for me too. Keep in mind that It is going to take an investment of time and money to build your brand, this doesn’t happen all at once.
Getting serious about unifying your brand and enriching your consumer experience is necessary to be an industry leader in our “consumer-driven market.” Increasing your branding efforts is going to increase your bottom line in the long run. By following these Four principles, you will be able to shape the perception of your brand in your consumers.
Consider these four foundational principles:
- Create Consistency – You can build trust with your consumer by having a consistent identity, consistent message, and consistent experience. If your brand lacks this consistency, you will breed confusion.
- Produce Quality – One great way to generate loyalty with your consumer is to produce quality products, service, and experiences. One of the end goals in business is to create repeat customers. “…it’s a lot less expensive to keep a current customer than to acquire a new one.” – Larry Myler (full Forbes article)
- Curate your Content – Knowing your target audience allows you to carefully craft your content to speak directly to their needs. This curation includes social media campaigns, email newsletters, promotional material, and more.
- Be Authentic – Brands are now taking on their own personality. The market is tending towards brands that have their consumers in mind and are not fake. Today’s culture breeds authenticity and that is what it expects from the brands they follow.