Branding is a powerful marketing strategy, yet it's often overlooked by organizations. The art of branding has long been used by companies the world over to increase their number of prospective customers while also increasing their customer retention rates.
Branding is the process of setting apart an organization from its competitors through symbols, designs and names which are unique only to them. Many companies have found that branding is at the core of customer service. The real way to increase sales, grow customer numbers, and stay at the top is through public perception and perception is built entirely by branding.
Have you ever asked yourself why you buy the same cereal over and over? It's probably because you have grown to identify with the mascot on the cereal box!
So now that we understand the importance of branding, how do we as small businesses build strong brands in a highly competitive market?
1. Give every contact a touch of your brand
This means that your logo, your name, and your contact information should be on everything that you touch. This is not limited to your business cards—your Google maps page and your website should also have a working active telephone number. Every contact with your company up to and including the stationary in the office should have at least your phone number and company address.
This practice complements the rule of seven, which states that prospects need to hear or see your marketing message seven times before they are prompted to take action.
2. Email lists are the holy grail of marketing
Remember when you signed up for a Costco card and entered your email address? You probably still get those messages. Email lists remain some of the most used widely marketing tools. According to the Marketing insider group, emails have higher conversion rates than even ad pop-ups.
One way to keep your clients in the know is a weekly email newsletter: emails with new discounts or coupons or even monthly updates on what is new in the business.
3. Blog it, vlog it, snap and Instagram it.
The rise of online vloggers has provided the market with a new way to advertise to prospective clients. The key to a successful vlog is in the relatability of the product (read: the person vlogging). Many of us would confess to having purchased acne medication purely because our favorite blogger confessed to its effectiveness.
Build a personal relationship which allows prospective customers to have the perception that they belong to your community and can relate to your business on a personal level. Instagram sponsored feeds also increase your reach, which will convert to sales.
4. What do people say about you online?
All of us have checked out Yelp reviews before considering a particular service provider. But have you checked yours? They'll tell you that what is perceived of you online is more important than what you deliver. Start building your online presence and it will draw customers to you. Read all your reviews and encourage customers to write good reviews. Respond to questions and bad reviews in a way that shows your desire to improve.
5. Creativity goes a long way!
Short vines are now selling like last year's cream cheese. More and more people are responding to popular hashtags and Twitter comments. While these are some creative marketing strategies, it is important to note that what works for a particular company may not work for your start-up. The point, however, is to do one thing and do it well.
We at LIMVI Studio, INC, in Irvine, have specialized in all kinds of branding techniques to allow you to focus on everything else!