With the advent of Internet Marketing, branding in marketing is absolutely essential and not just for big corporations anymore. At best, you have 30 seconds to get your prospect to click on your image.
Is your brand attracting the kind of attention you want or does your brand leave your traffic snoozing because it looks indistinguishable from every other brand out there?
If your brand is less than exciting, don’t worry. I’m going to share with you five steps that will help your company brand soar above the competition.
5 Steps to Make Your Brand Marketing Soar Above the Competition
Step 1) Make sure your brand represents the essence of who you are.
Your brand should accurately reflect your company’s reason for existence. Call this your mission, your vision, your Unique Selling Proposition.
Whatever you call it, the more clarity you have on why you are in business, the more your brand will accurately portray the essence of who you are as a company.
The result? You will increase your name recognition and brand awareness. If who you are is reflected accurately in your business image, your prospects will be naturally attracted to your brand and ultimately the products or services you are offering, which will increase your bottom line. Further, congruence between image and essence translates to customer trust and loyalty.
In other words, your brand delivers what you promise. When your brand does not accurately reflect your business, your prospects may feel jipped. LIke you overpromised and underdelivered. You do not want your brand reflecting this bad business modus operandi!
Step 2) Make sure your brand is specifically tailored to your target market.
When you aim at nothing, you will hit nothing. You need to completely understand the customers or clients you are trying to reach. The more detailed description you have of your ideal client, the better your brand will be, the more magnetic your brand will be.
You cannot be all things to all people. That is impossible. Instead, find your niche and research this niche thoroughly.
Don’t know where to start? Often, the best place to start is an audience for whom you have an affinity. One that you can relate to.
Are you a mother? Then market to moms!
Are you passionate about real estate? Market to fellow realtors!
Do you love animals? Then market to fellow animal lovers!
I think you get the idea. Whatever market you choose, outline specific details like education level, geographic location, gender, marital status, income level, interests, etc.
Keep this in mind when developing your brand. If you need to, cut out a picture that encapsulates your target market and stick it to your computer monitor. Never forget WHO you are in business for!
Because when you remember your target audience in your branding, your marketing is more effective. You will reach the specific people who are interested in your product or service and your profits will soar!
Step 3) Make sure your brand does not come across as amateurish.
Do it yourself logos and “custom” designs are a dime a dozen. But buyer beware! A cookie cutter logo may not do your company justice! And it may look, in fact, amateurish.
When your brand does not come across as professional, it shows to your prospects that you do not treat your business seriously. And if you do not treat your business seriously, then what does that mean about your product or service and the customer service that comes with that product or service?
A cheap brand comes across as just that–cheap. And cheap brands are indistinguishable from the competition, which means your brand gets left in the dust.
Don’t let that happen to you. If you want to design your logo yourself or buy a stock logo, at least do research on what makes an effective image and what makes a cheap image. Do your homework and your brand will soar above the competition!
Step 4) Make sure you include a photograph of yourself in your branding to convey trust.
Today’s marketing is relational. The Internet is vastly anonymous and your prospects are scared of scams. Your prospects may also be tired of corporations “running the show” and prefer to work with someone real, down to earth.
Including a photograph of yourself with your brand will help build trust with your prospects.
But make sure it is a good photograph! It may be worth the investment to hire a professional photographer. If you decide not to hire a photographer, at least make sure you find a person you trust to take your photograph.
Like a logo, a cheap photograph translates to a worthless product or service. Your customers will not be drawn to your page and you will be again left in the dust behind your competition.
Step 5) Make sure you apply your brand consistently across all mediums.
Applying your brand consistently or the same to your business cards to your website to your email marketing to your social marketing will increase your brand awareness and name recognition.
You want your prospect, when they click on a banner to your website, to instantly be able to recognize your page as the same entity.
Or when a prospect clicks on your landing page for your ezine offer, you want that ezine to have consistent branding with that web page. Otherwise, your new subscriber will unsubscribe you because they don’t remember you!
Remember, it takes at least seven exposures of a product or service to make a sale. So building a consistent brand across all mediums is building a brand awareness that will result in more leads and more sales. It is also building trust. It shows your prospects that you are serious about your business and they can depend on your product or service to solve their particular problems. And when your prospects feel like you can solve their problems, your profits will soar and your competition be left in the dust!
Practice these steps above and you will find that your prospects aren’t snoozing anymore at your images, but instead, your brand sizzles, soaring above your competition and resulting in a better bottom line!
Dana Susan Beasley is principal and publisher of AngelArts.biz, and the author of a 3-month graphic design and marketing course called brand Identity Quest. An experienced and creative graphic artist, she has been helping companies, organizations, and artists reach new heights in their branding for over 17 years.