If you are a small business owner, your business plan refers to your business brand and it must outline your branding strategies. If you are in the process of starting a business, the challenge of creating a brand, brand name, branding your business ideas, and generating an appropriate branding strategy is monumental. Then, the real work begins, for branding your business involves 5 concrete steps:
- Establish Specific Brand Attributes
- Formulate an Irresistible Brand Identity
- Produce Branded Products
- Start a Brand Marketing Program
- Win the Brand Management Game.
You have to ask the right questions to create a memorable brand in the psyche of your target market. First, you need to understand how a successful business is branded. Second, you must have a clear concept of what branding is. Third, you have to learn effective brand management techniques, essential for your business success.
How a Business Gets Branded
Creating the perfect brand to be memorable among a large variety of brands is a challenging endeavor for any business, large and small. Making a brand that resonates with potential customers is the main goal of any strategically planned marketing campaign. Brand creation involves an introspective look at the unique qualities inherent in your business.
How to present these unique qualities in an attractive way to the consumer is how a business gets branded. So what is it that makes one brand a swirling success, and another brand a mediocre dud? It’s simple, a brand is more than just brand image; your brand is the identity of your business. Ask yourself what it is that your business has to offer to the consumer, how do clients benefit from the use of your product and service, how does your brand perform better than other brands in the same industry. The actual answers to these questions, and others related to brand attributes, form the solution to your branding challenges. You want to know why top brands constantly reinvent their brand image. Top brands seek to respond to consumer desires, and strive to fulfill these needs to the best of their abilities. Your brand name has to be recognized as a choice brand. Why would people choose your brand over other brands? The answer is found in one word only: Quality. The unique quality offered by your brand purpose, value, and responsiveness to your target market expectations, makes your brand, not only memorable, but magnetic too.
What is Branding?
A quality brand recognizes the importance of putting together a branding strategy effectively promoting the essence of the brand, and how it compares to other brands within the same industry. Your brand must outshine the competition by creating a buzz in the marketplace. The way to do this is by branding your business. So, what is branding? Branding is outlining the uniqueness of your products and services. You can do this through a 3-fold process of: 1) looking at your industry and evaluating where you place in regards to industry standards; 2) connecting with your target market by fulfilling their needs, and 3) promoting your brand as a choice-brand.
Major brand names and top brands go through this process repeatedly to ensure customers are:
- Getting top-of-the-line service
- Hooked on the brand
- Involved in the branding process
Think of the branding strategies used by Coke and McDonald’s, the customers are featured in the marketing campaigns, as the use of superstars has proven to be somewhat problematic in the past. For smaller businesses, e-Branding is very effective and it often comes in the form of client testimonials. Imagine your small business being recognized as a top brand in your industry. You can use social media to establish yourself as the-go-to expert in your field, thereby branding your business as an exceptional commodity in the eyes of your fans and followers. Attracting new clients to your business then becomes a breeze.
Simply put, brand management is the application of marketing techniques to promote a brand. Your brand encompasses the product or service you provide for your clients. All brands have a niche to promote, whether it is a new, innovative product line in the car industry or a revolutionary service in the mobile industry. It does not matter. Brand management is essential to the survival of your brand. So you can choose the latest branding strategies using online marketing techniques by setting up a blog, creating a buzz via social media networks, or you can go the more traditional root of advertising locally and sending out press releases. You also can utilize a combination of both conventional and up-to-the-minute marketing strategies to promote your brand. Competition is fierce, but brand marketing begins with clearly-defined branding strategies that encompass the essence of your brand. Though the process of brand management is not an exact science, managing how your brand is perceived in the marketplace, involves the flawless execution of a marketing plan. The important part of brand management is making your brand identity recognizable and irresistible to your potential clients.
A brand is the product of consumer belief and bond formed with your business, leading to a conscious decision to choose your brand over another top brand. So the way your business is perceived, and more importantly how you represent your business to potential clients, as a choice brand, directly impacts your profit margins.