Businesses are complex: in many ways, they can be likened to a machine. Many different elements have to work together in harmony for the overall thing to function- in business, these elements are your product or services, your employees, your business model, the law and so much more. But there’s one thing that has to be right to support everything else, and that’s your branding. This influences everything from the direction of your workforce to the message communicated to your customers. Here’s why branding is so important, and relevant changes you might want to make.
Brands Build Trust
The market is saturated with business. Now anyone can open up a business right from home due to the accessibility of the internet there are millions out there. This might be great for customers as it gives them more choice, but not such good news for business owners who have more and more competition each month and year. Getting customers even for established businesses can be tricky for this reason, but when you’re new to the game, it can be even more of a problem. One thing you can do about this is build up your brand. By doing so, customers are much more likely to put their trust in you when it comes to buying from your store. This is because your brand is essentially a promise to your customers, you aren’t just selling a product but your whole reputation. People are far more likely go for brands because they know they’re investing in quality and excellent service when they do so.
How Can a Brand Set Me Apart
To set yourself apart from your competition, which are the many other sites out there doing a similar thing to you- you need to find your USP or unique selling point. You might offer similar services to other businesses out there but what is it about yours that makes it different? It could be price (budget or luxury) is could be the service you offer, free shipping, even payment plans. Whatever that selling point is, you will need to focus on it and build your brand upon it. Find your niche to attract your loyal customer base. A brand not only sells a product but a certain kind of lifestyle too. Bear this in mind when you’re coming up with initial branding ideas.
How Do I Build My Brand
Your business name is something that has to be absolutely right- it will often be the first thing people hear about your business so make sure it’s memorable and appealing to customers. The next thing you will need to consider is your logo or trademark, this will instantly sum up your entire brand and to your customers will be recognizable at a glance. Go with something that’s aesthetically pleasing and unfussy. After that, you will need to go through the trademark registration process so that no one plagiarises or steals from you. All of the materials you use from websites to adverts to business cards should display your logo.
Use Online Tools
Once you’ve got the branding right on your business, you will need to market yourself. You need to reach as many people as possible to grow your customer base and get the sales you need to sustain your business. This doesn’t have to be expensive, social media sites are great for this and free to set up. Work on boosting those numbers as quickly as possible, you could collaborate with bloggers, host giveaways and share useful information to encourage people to follow. The trick is to make sure there’s something in it for them Google Adwords and SEO practices are other useful ways to market your business. If you’re unsure or new to the game, speak to an SEO expert.
Educate Others About Your Business
People need to know exactly what your business is- what it’s selling and whether it’s suitable for them. With some businesses this is obvious, but others it can be harder to work out at a glance. You might know what you do inside out but your potential customers might not. Have an about page on your website to sum things up in simple English without too much jargon. That way people are able to easily see if they want to buy what it is you’re offering. Make it too confusing and you could lose precious clients and customers.
Attend Networking Events
Attending networking events on a regular basis is fantastic way to get your businesses name out there and meet potential clients. Have a look online for networking events in your industry and try to attend as many as you can. You may have to travel for this, but it can be worth the expense. Set up a stall and have plenty of leaflets and business cards at the ready- you could even go a step further and have things like lapel pins from thepinfactory.com.au created. That way clients have a little something to keep which will remind them of your business when they return home and could be the reason they decide to work with your business.
Contact Clients Directly
You will find that if you wait for all clients to contact you that business won’t move very fast. Unless you’re already massively established, chances are you might need to make the first move. Being proactive in this way could well mean you end up with a lot more clients on your system! There are a number of methods you can approach clients. Some of the best include cold calling, emailing and connecting on social media.
Both branding and marketing can be tricky, especially if you’re a newbie business owner. Be sure not to overlook these crucial elements, and if you’re unsure at all getting an expert on hand to show you the ropes can be useful.
What steps have you taken to build a strong brand and market yourself in your business?