The words brand and branding are being used liberally anywhere you look. For small business owners or managers like you, this abundance of information may do more damage than help. It’s important to understand the fundamentals first before seeking out ways to improve your own brand. Because like one of the most prominent pieces of info you may find about branding, it is extremely important in that it can make or break your company even before you start.
Don’t worry, the fact that you’re reading this means you’ve started on the right path.
What exactly is branding?
An organisation’s brand is made up of the associations and perceptions people have about them. These associations may be intentional or direct results of their marketing strategies. They can also be unintentional, like a client’s story on social media painting the organisation in a positive light. Similarly, a negative, prominent review or a particularly bad reception for a marketing tactic can result in a brand’s devastation.
Branding is the process of making the most of your company’s brand by steering it into more positive associations. It involves a combination of marketing, advertising, design, culture, service proposition and sometimes even luck.
Why should you care?
Generally, a brand that people associate with positive things is bound to thrive. According to Market Insider, Interbrand ranked the world’s best brands in 2019 to see how much they are worth. In their evaluation, Apple ranked highest.
This is why every time Apple releases a product, people line up to purchase it. The actual proven performance of these products matter to an extent, but the reason people feel the need to get Apple products is their brand. According to Wired, the tech giant is associated with innovation, design, imagination.
Google ranked second in Interbrand’s list. But in their case, people don’t just want to buy their products, many also want to be part of their company and work there. According to the Job Network, aside from great compensation and benefits, Google is associated with a smart and motivated workplace that encourages everyone to bring out their most creative and inspired selves.
For small businesses, branding is an important opportunity that many don’t take advantage of. According to Forbes, because other small businesses (AKA your competition) don’t usually invest in branding heavily, your small business will benefit more from it. They said it means that the space in your potential clients’ minds regarding your particular industry is not yet occupied.
What you should do
Branding takes a lot of planning. The first thing you should do is to establish a compelling brand vision that will drive the rest of your future business plans. If you want to be known as the plumber with the best turnaround times in the city, work towards that goal while you incorporate it into your marketing and advertising messages.
Forbes also adds that it’s important to market a trait in your business that your competitors are not focusing on. If everyone else is talking about how low their prices are, focus on saying how good your service is.
You should also apply these concepts to your online presence. A unified brand is a strong one. You can work with professional web design services in Northampton to boost your web branding efforts.
Branding is one of the most important strategies you can adopt to help your business succeed and grow.