To build a brand around your business means to make it associated with certain emotions, actions and values for your clients. That means that once they see something that reminds them with your business – like color or font or a message, they have certain positive associations. This is important as today, marketing is based strongly on branding. Big companies have made their brands worldwide known and you cannot really expect to reach their influence but the good news are that you don’t have to. Being a small business owner, your branding process doesn’t have to resemble the one that big companies have. You need to tailor it for yourself and the specifics of your business. Here are the things that you need to take care about when branding your business.
You can definitely start by defining what your small business stands for and what are the values that you want your business to be known for. This is one of the things that are pretty basic and without it, your small business will hardly succeed in building your brand. Keep these simple and easily recognizable: speed, responsibility, accuracy, reliability, job well done and many more and just some of the values that a business can embrace and start building their brand on. These core values need to be constant and they should now change. There can be more of them, but don’t choose more than three as they will confuse people.
This is something that needs to be done by a professional. It includes colors, logo, tagline, type of letters and everything else that will visually represent your company. People respond greatly to the visual presentation so don’t underestimate the power of it and definitely don’t do it on your own. This is something that needs to be done by a reputable expert. Good visual presentation cannot do wonders on its own, but it is a basic part of branding and you cannot do it without it.
Your best chance to build a brand as a small business is to get neighborly and personal with your customers and clients. That is one thing that is easier for a small business to do than for a big corporation. Since the social media is the omnipresent power today and it allows you to have direct constant with your clients, this is one of the essential tools when it comes to building a good PR with your clients. That is the space and the place where you make your voice and brand ‘persona’. Make the most of it and make sure that you are measuring your success and different actions that you make on social platforms. There will be some very useful and interesting numbers in analytics reports, like in this infographic by Unmetric, that will tell you if you are on the right track.
It is very hard to be neighborly if they don’t see you, feel you or know you. Therefore, make sure that you are physically present in their lives. Don’t just put pesky leaflets in their mailboxes, but be there for your closest neighbors. Sponsor a charity of a local character or organize some event of the local character that the neighbors will appreciate. Treat the people living around your company like real neighbors and they will give back by spreading the word of mouth, which is the advertising of the highest quality.
Listen to the people who care enough to speak to you. Don’t let any of the complaints left unanswered or left to be. Make sure that all your employees are educated and informed about the relation you want them to have with the clients and require them to keep it up. By listening to your clients you will get the ideas about new products, new adjustments to your services and many more precious info that you wouldn’t have otherwise.
Being a small business doesn’t mean that you have lost the battle for your share of the market to the big companies in advance. It only means that you need to play the card of your advantages and those advantages are the personal approach and recognizability in the local area that only a small business brand can make. Therefore, go for it and make the most of it.
About the Author
Dan Radak is a VPS security and Hosting specialist. Currently he is employed as a consultant in a couple of e-commerce companies. Lately he has been interested in studying related themes. You can follow him on Twitter.
Photo credit: Dennis Forgione