Businesses, big or small, need to start with establishing their brand to rise above a sea of competitors and establish their reputation. As an entrepreneur, this will allow your target audience to actually look your way and see what you have to offer. The value of your brand sets the benchmark for your marketing potential, which would then, ultimately, drive your sales.
Many of the most popular businesses today began with creating a unique, attention-grabbing, and high-recall trademark. If you own a startup business and planning to make it big in the industry, here are 10 tried-and-tested tips that will help you establish your brand.
10 Branding Ideas for Business
1. Assume an identity
Even if your product is similar to the store just across the street, you need to create a character that will make you unique amongst your competitors. So before you get everything else started, take the time to sit down, research, and brainstorm with your business partners (or with trusted friend and families, if you’re flying solo) regarding the image you want to channel to the customers. Once you’re convinced of an identity, stick with it.
2. Know your audience
When done properly, this single piece of advice will build your business on a solid foundation. Your audience is one of the most important factors to consider when putting up a business simply because they are the ones who will buy your product.
Therefore, it is important that you familiarize yourself with your target market, so that you can tailor your products and services according to what they need and want. You can also look into more specific details, such as age groups, ethnicity, religion, and family background, as these other factors can also give you better insight on how you will market your product/service.
3. Identify your competition
As they say, keep your friends close and your enemies closer. This doesn’t mean though that you should declare war with your competitors. What you basically have to do is identify who your rivals in the market are, and then study their strengths and weaknesses. Look out for aspects that you can develop when applied to your own business and see if you can eliminate or at least minimize the flaws.
4. Design an ingenious logo
Your logo may not be your business’ be-all and end-all but it is the face of your brand, so you might as well make one that your audience will like and never forget. If you’re not skilled at designing logos, you can hire a professional to do it for you. Just make sure that you incorporate your brand’s message into the logo, be it with the font, colors, and overall format. Also, try to achieve a look that will make the logo as unique as possible.
5. Create a website
Whether you’re going to sell online or in a brick-and-mortar shop, it would help your business a lot if you create a website for it. This is an ideal place for you to showcase your products and interact with your customers easily. In your website, you can include information, such as the company’s history, products, a gallery, and even order forms for convenient transactions. Just make sure that you keep it professional all the time, aesthetic- and content-wise.
There are tons of articles and videos that can walk you through on how to set up a website.
6. Blog regularly
As an entrepreneur, part of your job is to keep your customers updated not just about your products but also of the industry in a level that they will understand and appreciate. Stemming from the tip above, you can accomplish these by regularly publishing blog posts on your website.
Write about your new products or relay to your customers the latest industry-related event you’ve attended through a short feature article. If your products require assembly or specific instructions, you can also make tutorials in video format to assist your customers even when they’re not in the store. The idea here is to provide content that your customers will find highly useful and relatable.
7. Engage in social media
The digital age affords today’s customers the power to share anything they want in real time. Sharing can come in the form of posting on social media accounts whether they were satisfied or unhappy with an item they purchased.
To connect with your customers better and learn what they think, establish an active online presence by creating accounts on and exploring the features of the most popular social networking sites (e.g. Facebook and Twitter). Build your online community, and engage them in virtual conversations. This way, you’ll get to know your customers more and improve your products/services based on their opinion.
8. Join related business events
If you haven’t attended any industry-related events since you opened for business, the next one in the calendar would be a good start. Once you’re there, get to know other participants. Who knows? You might just pick up a thing or two on how to improve your business.
Continue attending any workshops you think would add to your skills and knowledge. You should also try to join committees or organizations to further your knowhow and experience as an entrepreneur.
9. Encourage feedback
Your customers are the best judge of your products since they are the ones who take a chance on what you’re selling. As such, it is always highly advisable to ask them for feedback, whether it’s through your website, social networking sites, or the more traditional way of filling up printed forms. When they do, don’t forget to thank them for their time. Some would even provide incentives (e.g. small freebies).
Remember that when asking for feedback, you always need to be courteous, even if you would come across some possible callous or downright negative comments.
10. Be consistent
Sure, the world is fast changing especially in light of the evolution of technology. Keep in mind, however, that you should be consistent with your brand’s message without sacrificing the need to keep up with the trends.
Once your brand is starting to gain a foothold, stick to that message so you won’t confuse your customers. Also, instead of trying out every single strategy available, you might find it more effective to focus on which ones gave you positive results and then develop them.
So if you’re looking forward to being that store everybody talks about because it’s just plain awesome, jumpstart your business plan with a corresponding awesome brand. Which of these tips are you going to incorporate to your strategies? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts!