In business, make no mistake about it, having a recognizable brand, and a brand that is known and liked, is one of the most valuable things that a business can own. It can be used a number of ways, and be the thing that helps keep the business to grow. In fact, according to a study done in the fast few years, nearly 60% of consumers prefer to buy new products from brands that they have heard of and that are familiar to them. So as a small business, you do have to compete against the big brands who already have a loyal customer base, and have large marketing budgets. That is why you have to find different ways to help your business to stand out from the crowd, and build solid brand all of your own.
To break things down a little, it is a good idea to start looking at what a brand actually is. For example, a brand is something that is the perception of your business from customers. And if you want to have a successful brand, then you need to keep the communication, experience, and message clear across all that you do. Otherwise, it can confuse potential customers and they won’t have any interest in it. The areas that you need to look at, are things like the environment that your business is in, like the store front or the office; is it in-keeping with your branding? The signs, posters, and marketing that you use needs to match too, as well as packaging and logos. If you create some custom air fresheners for cars for all of your team to use, then would something like that be on-brand? It needs to be in order to have the right impact and get your brand name out there. The website that you have and the online advertising is another area to look at, as well as the customer service that your business offers; the messaging has to all be the same.
So if you are looking to build your brand, then here are the things that you need to be thinking about:
Determine your target audience
To build a brand, you need to know who your brand is being aimed at. Then you can focus on it being suitable for them. Your brand can’t do all things for everyone, so you need to decide and know who your target audience is. When you are brand building, keep in mind who precisely you are trying to reach. Then you can tailor what you do to them and to help meet their needs; be specific.
Establish a mission statement
Have you thought about the mission that your brand and business needs to have? If you’re not too sure what that looks like, then it is all about being clear exactly what your company is passionate about; the why for your business. If you want to have a brand that customers can trust, then your mission statements needs to do exactly what it says. You can’t say the brand is all for the environment and doing its bit, if you choose packaging that can’t be recycled, for example. All things need to reflect the mission that your brand has.
Research brands in your niche
It is not a good idea to exactly copy or imitate what is already being done out there. But it can be a good idea to be aware of what they are doing, and seeing the things that have been done well, as well as the things that haven’t been done as well. You want to differ from the competition, but in a positive way, so that customers would choose you over someone else. It is important not to skip this step when you’re looking at ways to stand out. For a brand name to be effective, for example, it does need to be easy for customers to recognize and then to remember.
Outline qualities and benefits your brand offers
There is no getting away from the fact that there will always be some brands with bigger budgets and with more resources to do what they need to. However, what you have and the benefits that your brand can bring, belong just to you. So starting a brand that is going to stand the test of time, means that you figure out what you offer as a brand, and what you do that no one else is doing. If you know who your ideal target audience is, then you need to give them a reason to want to choose your brand over another.