The secret behind any successful business isn’t just having a top notch product or service, it’s the branding. Building and effectively managing a brand plays a vital part in making what you have to offer a consumer’s first choice. This can’t happen if you don’t build a strong brand that you continually and efficiently manage. Effective branding differentiates and elevates your products and/or services and provides your potential clients with a reason to choose what you have to offer over your competitors. A strong brand identity also helps sustain your current clients.
The Definition of Branding
Branding is the sum total of a business’s value, including services, products, advertising, positioning, people and culture. Effective branding builds trust and respect with customers, employees and stakeholders. Brands provide potential clients with a firm idea of what they’re getting, which means the buying decision will be easier as well.
The Advantages of Branding
The most important advantage of developing a great brand, adding uniqueness to your services or products, is that it can’t help but boost sales. If you have earned a trusted brand, when it does come time to raise your prices (most businesses do eventually), your target audience will accept the increase because they’ll feel that you’re well worth the investment. In other words, if your business is built on a sound brand base, you’ll be able to transition to the next stage without losing the loyalty and trust of your customers. In addition, if you do end up running into a problem due to a service mishap or product performance issue, your customers would be more willing to overlook it if your brand’s business model ensures that you’ll resolve the problem. The most important thing to remember is that consumers trust strong brands because they trust their professionalism and know what to expect from them.
What Makes Up a Brand?
Your “Unique Selling Proposition/Point (USP)” – it’s what makes your business stand out from your competitors. The USP is an analysis of what you do and how you do it differently and better than others. Generally, a USP can be summarized in a short tagline that eventually becomes an easy to remember catch phrase, focusing on how your products for services will benefit the consumer. Once you’ve created your tagline/strapline that presents your brand’s benefits and apply it to your professional brand identity, you’ll work it into all of your advertising, including your social media platforms. Take an innovative approach to developing your brand and don’t be afraid to be bold and even a bit daring. In other words, create a presence that exhibits how much you believe in your product or service, in a “bold” way that will catch people’s attention.
You Are Your Brand
It’s important to remember that, especially with small businesses, that “you” are the brand. Your persona can be a major asset if you present yourself as a professional who is passionate about what they have to offer.
Today, consumers are trending toward the “personality” independent establishments instead of impersonal international retail chains. As a matter of fact, big name businesses today are attempting to imitate independent business models in an effort to capture a portion of that market. Genuinely unique, independent businesses can leverage their distinctive status, attracting consumers who are looking for something more unique, authentic and even fun, that aligns with their interests and needs.
Build Long Term Relationships
If you want to build long term relationships with your customers, don’t hard sell what you’re offering and raise any expectations that have the potential of resulting in broken promises. Instead, create trust with personable, honest branding, being clear about who you are and what your business genuinely offers, being true to the values that drive it each and every day. Being straight forward with your target audience will help reinforce your business’s character and clearly define what it’s offering so consumers are completely aware of what to expect from your product or service.
The Future of Branding
The future of branding is all about fluidly engaging with your target audience and showing respect for their intelligence by not boring them with stale content or hard selling. These stipulations definitely come into play with social media, which is also a marketing practice that smart businesses take advantage of. Social media expands your reach via multiple sources, providing the opportunity for you to get in front of a massive audience, sharing your knowledge and expertise. Bottom line, social media is the future when it comes to branding.
When it comes to understanding the importance of business branding the most important thing you can do first is take the time to carve out your distinctive brand identity. Always keep in mind that in most cases, better perceptions can out sell better products.
Designpluz is a Sydney based Branding Agency, specialised in Web Design, SEO Services, Logo Design, Graphic Design & much more.
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