Branding is an amazing concept. It's what allows people to see your name and instantly recognize it with the product or service you offer as well as the experience that you are known for. There are plenty of "household names" out in the marketplace and that's because the companies have spent a lot of time and effort with branding.
What is a Brand?
As Entrepreneur explains, your brand is your promise. It's what makes you unique within your industry. Much of it has to do with your unique value proposition. You have to be different from everyone else. You can look at any industry and identify the different brands. Take pizza, for example. There are plenty of brands out there and you know how to differentiate based upon what they promise. One might have a specific kind of crust while another one promotes the use of fresh ingredients and another one promises the lowest prices.
You choose to be the most affordable, the most innovative, the most luxurious...whatever it is that you choose to be, you make this promise to your target audience.
Why Branding is Important
There are two major forms of marketing: branding and direct response advertising. Both are an important part of your marketing strategy. Some people are ready to take action right away, which is when direct response advertising is helpful. However, there are plenty of people who aren't ready to buy anything yet. They simply go about their day soaking up all of the branding advertisements that are out there.
It might take a person five or even seven different exposure points to recognize the brand. Once this happens, though, they might make the decision to remember the brand because they like what they have seen. This means that when they are ready to make a purchase, they know about the brand.
Once the branding is in place, you have recognition. There are several other benefits as well, including:
- It establishes trust
- It builds financial value
- It inspires your employees
- It generates new customers
Branding is not something that happens overnight. It's the core part of your marketing strategy - and everything you do works toward your brand. Your logo, your font, your voice, your products, your employee culture, and everything else helps to build your brand. It's what allows people to trust you and recommend your brand to others.
But, Branding is Expensive!
Who says so? There are plenty of companies out there who want to help you with direct response marketing. If they don't offer branding as part of their services, they will tell you that it's too expensive to focus on branding. Will you compete with all of the big box brands? Probably not. But you don't need billboards, Facebook ads, radio ads, TV ads, and everything else. Your brand doesn't have to be in everyone's face. There's something to be said about subtlety. It can, and does work.
In the end, your brand is who you are. If people feel indifferent about you, they are not going to establish loyalty to you. This means that they might use you today, but the competition tomorrow. A brand is what establishes repeat business and allows you to have sustainable growth. You need to be sure you have a brand that people can identify with in order to ensure you have a way of getting new business.
Your brand is what makes you different. Show that you have a good product or service and give people a reason to do business with you. It's what will make all the difference in your marketing strategy now and in the future.
To learn more about how to improve your marketing strategies, give us a call or send us a note today at Small Dog Creative 661-702-1310!