Written by Guest Contributor: Bukola B.
Most times, we are led to believe that branding is something exclusively reserved for big companies. Branding in fact, is a tool which speaks volumes about you, your product and/or service(s) and is the same with a small business, sole proprietorship or home based business as it is with a conglomerate or multinational regardless of location.
Brand is the image your business presents to the world at large. A brand is your business’ corporate identity; it translates why the business exists, the business’ aims, core values, objectives, mission and vision. A highly effective brand will put your business on the center stage, solidify your relevance and build your credibility in front of your existing and prospective clients and customers.
Your brand dictates how the business will be viewed by the customer; a brand with a high ‘perceived value’ will easily be at a greater advantage over rival brands especially in terms of price. Perceived value is what makes people pay extravagant and exorbitant prices for designer clothing where they can easily buy similar clothing for a lot less. The power of perceived value is immense and it grows with the level of promotion and awareness you create for your brand.
Differentiation – a powerful and well established brand can take you out of the crowd. It singles you and your business out in a sea of faceless similar products or services. The higher the ‘perceived value’ of your brand, the higher the differentiation margin.
A good brand can easily promote itself and attract its own customers. It can also pass the business’ vision and mission message across by itself. This makes the work of the sales team easier. When a business’ brand is self reliant, your time and resources can go towards creating more revenue for your business as well as generating additional profit channels.
An aggressively promoted and marketed brand also produces positive results which have a multiplier effect; there will be a spinoff of such result on the business’ products and/or services so that there will decreased need to individually promote every product or service generated from such brand aggressively (at high costs).
Make a list of the important features and characteristics of your business; its strengths and it unique selling point or anything which distinguishes it from rival brands.
Know your target market and mark out your niche. You should be able to easily describe the people who fall in your target audience and identify the characteristics that unite them as a market and with your business.
Make a list of names that coincide with the key words in your mission statement or easily describe what your business does. You can also coin names that can easily be tied to the relevant elements of your business, mission statement Your tagline should reinforce and back up your mission statement, not subtract or deviate from it.
Make a consistent logo that can be easily identified and easily adapted to any type of media; this will intensify your brand awareness campaign and solidify your brand.
Continually use your logo, company name and tagline together to establish your brand over time. Once the brand has been created, you should aggressively promote and market it to firmly establish its presence and credibility in relevant markets.
A brand with clear description and high level of awareness will make it easy for you to introduce new products or service that falls in its niche market; a highly credible and respected brand will also make expansion into new product lines and markets easier.