With the end of the financial year approaching, there is no better time to think about your business. While people choose to “rebrand” themselves on new years day, even if you admit that your new years resolution has been the same for the last five years, its time to look at your business as the new financial year approaches. It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in, to build a successful business, you need to build a successful brand. The forefront of any business is the brand name and association. It can take years to build up your brand and only minutes to destroy.
United airlines – need I say more?
Building a brand is as equally as important to building a business. A brand will increase recognition, add value to the company and will increase client interaction. A brand includes mixing elements of customer service, reputation, advertising and logo to create a trusted relationship between the brand and client.
The key to success is to focus on your business as a long-term brand and what it means to you and your customers, this will enable your business to grow and expand without struggling to make ends meet in the already saturated market.
While a brand can sound daunting, expensive and time consuming, these three steps will give you the initial kick in the right direction.
- Find your niche.
Most businesses are created because they find a gap in the market. You may not be the first studio to open in South Perth, but if you focus on the real difference between your services and that of your competitor, you can use that to your advantage. What did another business lack that you brought to the table? Your differentiation will sell itself.
- Build your BRAND not your BUSINESS
While Business is important, it shouldn’t be the cherry on top. While it’s important to make sure your business runs smoothly, implement a branding strategy early on will set your business up for success as a brand means more to the client than anything else. If you’re about your business in a slump, check out our blog series “Kick Start your Success” for some more advice. Once you’ve focused in on your niche market, look at your overall brand. How would you describe it in 3 words? What do your location, atmosphere and work environment tell your customers? Is it personalised? After finding your niche, it’s easy to brainstorm a few points about what makes your brand YOU. Write them down, we’ll use them next.
- Expand & Communicate
Branding is all about the recognition and awareness of your brand. When you think of Coca Cola, you associate it with being refreshing, being thirsty and a nice warm day. Coca Cola has used careful yet effective advertising to create this recognition and perception surrounding their brand. Having a multi million dollar budget like Coca Cola isn’t necessary either, expanding your brand is about focusing on what makes your brand good and communicating that to your clients. You could offer convenience, great customer service or a new practice that isn’t offered locally. What matters now, is communicating that to your peers in the best form that’ll relate to them. Constant communication is needed to enhance and reaffirm your brand, and the values and ideologies that your brand represents. The only way your customers will know is if you communicate it to them. Some great ways of communication include;
- Facebook Page – A focused approach to your business and niche market.
- Twitter – A following of like minded people.
- A Blog focusing on aspects important to you and your business.
- Newsletters – Important updates to your industry are important to your customers as well.
- Referrals – A brand increases the trust in your business, why wouldn’t they want to share that?
Branding often takes a back seat as small business owners focus on revenue and sales as a separate entity yet marketing can be one of the most effective influences on success. Call us on 08 9474 6333 to discuss this further or keep an eye out for more marketing tips to come!