You have probably heard how important branding is for your business, but thought it was only an issue for large businesses. Branding your business is important for all businesses no matter what the size. It is an important part of your business plan and marketing plan. Branding your business helps people recognize your business, keeps the look and feel of all your correspondence consistent, and creates a “personality” for your business. If you think of the brands you already know like Coke, Pepsi, Apple, and Nike you can see how their brands are instantly recognizable. This is just one of the reasons branding your business is important. Here are a few more for you to consider:
Consistency: We touched on this one briefly in the introduction, but consistency is very important in your business identity. Take a look at your competitors and decide what you can do better, and use this in each and every advertisement and marketing campaign. Create a slogan or “sell line” for your business and use it.
Customer Service: Recruit employees who will support your brand and what your company stands for. Excellent customer service can make a business successful, as well as rotten customer service can break a company. If an employee can’t or won’t support what your company stands for, it is time to let them go. Word of mouth is your most valuable sales tool, and it can also be your most damaging.
Public Relations: This goes hand in hand with customer service. If you make promises, keep them. For example if you promise to sponsor a local Little League team, follow through and do it. Get involved in the community and show you’re a good citizen. Be diligent in paying your invoices and honor your business deals. Never commit to something you can’t follow through and complete.
Web Presence: It doesn’t matter how big or small your business is; you need a website. Branding will create a consistent and smooth look to your site. Even local businesses need a website. More people search the web now than use the telephone book to find local businesses. You can create free websites to start out on several sites, or hire a professional web designer to create one. The money you spend will be recouped in increased sales and brand awareness.
Remember your brand is your public image. It is more than just a logo, it is also the culture of your business and needs to be consistent. It is the first thing potential customers see when they come in contact with you and your business. So don’t think you don’t need one, each and every business needs branding.