Small Business Branding: Strategies & Brand Identity Tips

Branding is what establishes your business' identity. Here are some important things to know about branding.

Although the name of your business and your logo on your business card and letterhead are part of branding, it is much more than that. Your brand is your business’ identity. A potent brand identity is a statement that says what it is that your business does, how you go about doing it, and who you are, along with establishing your significance and credibility to your customers.

Your brand also has some other indefinable attributes to it. It is the way customers perceive your business. If the brand name of a company is perceived as high value, it enjoys several advantages
over its competitors, particularly related to pricing.

Perceived value is the reason why people pay top dollar for branded goods and clothing. How a brand is perceived comes about by highly effective promotion of the brand, which results in creating good awareness about it.

A Brand Implies Differentiation

One of the primary reasons for creating a brand of your own is to differentiate your business from your competitors. For example, there are thousands of websites, so are there innumerable home-based businesses. Therefore, it is imperative for you to constantly seek ways to distinguish your business from the others. The brand you create for your business, if effective, will accomplish that for you.

It Means More Efficient, Effective Marketing

A unique brand name is also a good way to make your sales personnel (even though it may be only you) more efficient and effective. With a brand name that speaks for itself, you can focus all your attention on selling your product or service to a prospective client, instead of having to spend a large part of the time explaining about your business and your product or service.

So, how do you go about creating a brand for your business? The tried and tested methods are creating a logo, thinking up an appealing slogan, using color, and specifying your product or service. Let’s examine each.

Creating Logos

When it comes to marketing and brand recall, a unique logo works best. By making your logo the main theme of your marketing and advertising materials, its image will soon be associated with your business.

While some logos characterize the products they represent, many don’t -think of BMW, FedEx and McDonald’s. However, each of these brands is familiar all over the globe. A well-recognized logo is often the best branding strategy you can devise.

Think up a Slogan

While a well-recognized logo works well, you could add to its impact by thinking up a catchy slogan. A few nifty words saying exactly what your business is about can be a very effective brand building tool. Think of these: Kellogg’s Rice Krispies – Snap, Crackle, Pop; AT&T – Reach out and touch someone; Disneyland – The happiest place on earth.

Another advantage of slogans is that, as changes are brought about to your company, you can change taglines accordingly, while logos are generally permanent fixtures once they become recognized. McDonald’s, for instance, comes up with new slogans every once in a while, especially for the emerging, new markets it forays into.

Use Colors

Similar to logos, a lot of companies use particular colors which are associated with their identity. Often, colors are used to evoke specific emotions. For example, colors like yellow, orange or red are associated with hot food and are usually used by fast food companies. On the other hand, cooler hues like blue or purple evoke weightlessness and lightness; hence they are often used for diet or slimming products. Green is usually used for organic foods.

Many other colors that depict quality, dependability and so on are used quite effectively for branding.

Focus on the Services

Another form of branding is spelling out a service you have to offer that nobody else provides. Focus on what is unique about you, or what you do better or differently from others, and utilize that as your chief marketing strategy. Remember Domino Pizza’s 30-minute delivery guarantee?

Whether your business is meant for your locality or as a worldwide brand, it is important to create an identity for it. Branding not only sets you apart from others, but makes your company a familiar entity in the market. While branding successfully can take money, effort and time, your business will certainly be rewarded manifold by it.

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