If you’re in marketing or advertising industry, most probably you have heard the word, ‘brand’. What is a brand?

The one word answer is, “Everything”.

Branding helps to build a clear image for your business.

According to Forrester Research, “We live in the age of Customers.”

It allows you to develop an identity, and establish a reputation in the industry.

Read the statement of Jeff Bezos, CEO and Founder of Amazon,

“Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room. A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person.”

But there are some confusions around it, is the branding is expensive for my small business? Do I need to hire a branding expert? How do you make your business stand out from others?

In this article, you’ll discover what’s the importance of branding and how you can start building a brand identity for your business today on a budget.

Why is branding important for your business?

Branding has the power to improve the value of your business, improve visibility, build a trust between your customers, and motivate your employees.

You MUST invest your time, energy, and resources to develop a strong brand identity online. A brand delivers a promise to your customers. Your social media presence, content and your website matter when it comes to building a strong presence online.

Howard Kosgrove, vice principal of marketing at Lindsay, Stone and Briggs Advertising in Madison said that,

“A brand is the one thing that you can own that nobody can take away from you.”

Here are quick stats that will prove the overwhelming value of branding. Take a look:

  • 90% of consumers expect the customer experience to be consistent across all channels and devices used to interact with brands.
  • 48% of consumers said that a brand can gain their loyalty during their first purchase.
  • 91% of consumers want the brands they follow to be authentic in their social media posts.
  • 72% of marketers think that branded content is more effective than magazine advertisements, 69% say it’s superior to direct mail and PR.
  • According to a study by social media branding firm, BRANDfog, 82% of respondents trust a company more if it has a good presence on social media.

Wondering how to build a successful brand? Here, you’ll discover 11 amazing ideas.

#1 Identify your target audience

What’s the most critical part of your business? – Attracting customers.

First, you need to identify your target audience. You have to learn about your prospects because different people want different things. Understand their pain points or needs and offer them something that meets their needs.

Research can be very helpful for you. Conduct surveys, talk to people, take interviews, and gather feedback from your community.

#2 Determining your business goal or mission

If you want to build a strong brand image, you must determine your business goal or mission. Be clear about your vision and goals.

Let your prospects know what value you are offering and what’s your passion. Every element of your brand should reflect your mission.

Life is Good’s mission statement is: “Spreading the Power of Optimism”.

Life is God

They go even further with their mission by adding a statement, “Life is not perfect. Life is not easy. Life is Good.

#3 Build a brand message to make a connection

Tell your audience who you are, what’s your story, and why should they care. Build a message which has the power to make an emotional connection with your target audience.

Make your message simple and clear (use emotional language).

TOMS has a strong and positive brand image because they clearly define their message which makes an emotional connection: “With every product you purchase, TOMS will help a person in need. One for One.

Toms

#4 Design a brand logo and tagline

A logo is the most recognizable part of your brand. You must place your logo everywhere – website, business cards, company accessories, ads – everywhere.

Nielsen’s Global New Product Innovation Survey found that nearly six-in-10 global respondents (59%) prefer to buy new products from brands familiar to them.

A tagline helps your customers recall a brand name. And the tagline is the only thing that your competitors can never copy.

We all know “Nike” tagline: Just Do It.

#5 Digital Brochure

A digital brochure is an interactive way to provide your business materials (product or services) in a digital format. As everyone is online, they can access it from any device at any time.

Distribute it via email, via website, mobile apps and through social media channels.

#6 Create Quality Content

Content is King!

Quality content leads to higher engagement. Deliver different forms of content – white papers, guides, articles, blog posts, website content, and other rich content.

80% of consumer say “authenticity of content” is the most influential factor to become a follower of a brand.

#7 Build a strong presence on social media

Social media is a great platform to share valuable and relevant information. It’s a great way to make a connection with your audience. A strong social media presence can enhance your brand visibility.

Make sure to respond your customer’s queries efficiently to create a good brand reputation.

71% of customers who have a positive service experience via social media are likely to recommend that brand.

#8 Focus on visual content

Visual content has the power of grabbing the attention of your target audience. We, humans, are visual creatures. Visual content is 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content.

Start focusing on visual content. Determine specific colors and fonts for your brand. The color is a key element of brand recognition.

Google’s color scheme is easily recognizable. See Google’s color palette:

Google Image

#9 Integrate all your media channels

Branding is never ending process.

Integrate all online and offline media channels. Be everywhere and provide a 360 customer view. Combine all the marketing channels with relevant information to become a leading brand in your industry.

#10 Communicate with your customers consistently

Building trusted relationship with your customers is the most important part of growing a successful brand. Make a human connection with your customers.

No one wants to talk about a faceless business, they want to talk a genuine person. Respect your customers and listen what they are saying. Make a two-way communication.

Fulfill your promises and build a feeling of trust with your audience.

#11 You and your employees are brand’s biggest advocate

You and your employees know your brand better than anyone else. So encourage your employees to become your brand’s biggest ambassador.

Brand messages reach 561% further when shared by employees vs the same messages shares via official brand social media channels.

You can also design T-shirts with your brand logo, it’s a great opportunity.

Build an effective branding strategy and tell your story in a more engaging way. What is your strategy?

Do you want to share something? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

Featured Image via EdgeThreeSixty TM /Flickr

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