Setting Your Brand Apart from the Crowd
The Economist reports that the country is seeing a “once-in-a-generation surge in startups.” This means that the market is increasingly saturated with not only start ups but their associated brands. Your brand is what your customers should expect from you - it’s your voice, your mission, your marketing materials, your packaging, your website. Simply put, branding is not just a logo, it’s the reason people will choose you over others. Particularly for small businesses, branding will help attract and retain loyal customers. Your brand must stand apart from the crowd.
For a brand to be compelling, all elements should be authentic, unique, and resonate with your audience. The following four concepts will help you craft a compelling brand:
Know your “why.” Have a well-defined brand statement that says what you do and why you do it. Be authentically clear why you do what you do, so customers will get it.
Tell your story and form a connection with your customers. Encourage people to want to do business with you. Consumers are increasingly interested in the core values, beliefs, intentions, and the story of the brands they work with. The relationships you build through effective storytelling can create the appeal to select you over your competitors.
Make a good first impression. Unforgettable experiences – in-person, virtual, or via phone – shape the consumers impression of your brand and are talked about well after the initial interaction. Make sure you get it right: actively listen, be courteous, and clearly explain how you can provide value. Remember, it’s not impossible to come back from a bad first impression, it’s just a lot of work.
Offer a unique value proposition. A strong distinct value proposition is both memorable and sellable. The value you create is the soul of the brand. Give customers a reason to believe you can solve their challenges.
The process of branding is demanding, and it is crucial that you do it properly. Poor brand management is not something you can afford as you start or grow your business. Distinguish your brand from the competitors by clarifying your why, making a great first impression, creating a unique value proposition and connecting with people through storytelling. Make your brand the more memorable choice!