Branding has never been more important than it is today. Studies have shown that Millennials regard their brand preferences as nearly as important to their identity as religious preferences. That level of dedication and assessment cannot be overstated.
People make complex assessments of a company or product based on how they perceive the brand. As a result, when consumers make a purchase decision, branding can be a deciding factor. According to a Capgemini study, users who connect to a brand spend twice as much as those who don’t.
Your brand identity is what you create during the branding process. This can be both a difficult and exciting realization: branding can make or break your company. As a result, effectively building a brand is more than important; it’s unquestionably critical.
Strong branding benefits every aspect of your business, from first impressions to consistent reliability to long-term loyalists. Building a brand, like most things, is much simpler said than done, especially in an increasingly complicated and competitive world that heavily relies on internet-based customer engagement. Let’s take a look at some low-cost branding practices that business professionals can use:
The Costly Challenge of Branding
As a small business owner, you may believe branding is best left to the world’s Apple, Google, and Mcdonald’s. But the truth is that no matter how large (or small!) your company is, you need to consider branding if you’re in business.
Branding budgets are larger in bigger companies. However, you don’t need an Apple-sized bank account to start from scratch with an effective branding strategy. You can do numerous things to help your business stand out, capture your customers’ attention, and make your company memorable without breaking the bank.
This is an introduction to your company for many people, especially those who have come across it by chance. If they encounter an out-of-date, oddly shaped branded product, they may associate your company with being out-of-date. What are your top brands? Apple? Disney? Armani? What about Michael Kors? What about Dolce & Gabbana? What is it that they all have in common?
Successful companies consider every “aspect” of their product concerning branding. Even with a small product, notably established brands, not unlike designer retailers, to single one out, Michael Kors is an example of a renowned brand that practiced subtle yet tasteful branding.
A simple “MK” logo on the frames, and a customer knows it’s a Michael Kors product. They achieved this effect by starting from the basics and educating their audience with a familiar item. Then, they took buyers through a journey, from asking the question, “what are glasses made of?” And creating a premium product that goes beyond the typical pair of frames and how they’re built.
A Low Price to Pay for Promotion
While you may be eager to begin designing your branding strategy, keep in mind the following low-cost branding practices for business owners to implement to effectively promote their brand and business.
Keep branding designs simplistic.
Your logo’s color, typography, and spacing are the primary identifiers of your brand. For example, consider the golden arches, the Target bullseye, and the Nike check mark. They always have the same appearance. They don’t alter the shape, change the color scheme, or embellish their design with irrelevant imagery.
Keep the Conversation Going
Getting people to talk about your brand and contributing to the conversation is an important part of positioning yourself as a strong brand.
Keeping the conversation going requires a strong media or online presence that allows you to post and comment on important topics to your brand.
Give something back to your customers and thank them for sticking with your brand. Direct interaction with prospects and customers in person and over the phone, email, or social media helps maintain and boost engagement, leading to a strong brand.
Hire a Creative Team
There’s a reason you recognize major brands right away. The iconic Nike swoosh speaks for itself. Few things are as well-known as the blue, yellow, red, and green letters that spell out Google.
When done correctly, you can identify a brand simply by the tone it sets within its creative dynamics. A creative is in charge of ensuring that your brand is easily identifiable and that it reaches your ideal target audience. They devote time to determining who your users are and what they want and ensuring that your creative work impacts them.
Establish Yourself as an Expert
Bringing in new customers is one of the simplest ways to grow your audience. Inbound marketing is an effective tool because it relieves the pressure on your marketing and sales teams to produce results. Instead of finding new leads, your sales team handles incoming calls and inquiries.
So, how do you succeed at inbound marketing? The most straightforward approach is establishing yourself as an authority in your field. Customers will come to you for advice (and goods/services) to solve their specific problems if you share your insight and expertise. Fortunately, there are numerous ways to publicize your expertise and experience, including:
Frequently Asked Questions – You have answers to your customers’ questions. You can also ask your social media followers questions or incorporate them into feedback reviews.
Create articles that will interest both customers and industry insiders. You want to connect with them so they will be more likely to recommend your blog to others.
These webinars can be posted on your website or sold as digital products. Live webinars are an excellent way to interact with customers and directly answer their questions.
Use video content to your advantage because it is far more engaging than photos and text. For example, you can make how-to videos about your industry or show customers how to utilize your products more effectively.
Stay True to Your Brand Building
You’ve probably heard the phrase “consistency is key” a thousand times before, and it’s never more true than when discussing branding. Staying true to your brand building is critical to ensuring that your customers have confidence in your company, that your employees understand the expectations, and that your company has that all-important foundation on which to grow.
It is critical not to confuse consistency with rigidity. Instead, consider consistency to establish a well-defined set of principles and values. Then, your brand can stay true to its core values as it grows and adapts to the changing business landscape. You don’t have to sacrifice your brand to be adaptable.
Now Let’s Brand
The logo, color palette, name, voice, and imagery of your company are all branding examples. But it’s also more than that. It’s that ethereal sensation your customers get when they interact with your brand.
That is how powerful brands stand out from the crowd. A beautiful logo, a clever tagline, an original manifesto, and a clear brand voice all help, but truly strong brands flourish when they concentrate on the big picture of their brand. Get to the heart and soul of your target market and your organization, and you’ll have a successful brand.
Branding does not always have to be an expensive and either/or proposition. While not every business has the same budget, there are ways for smaller businesses and startups to gain exposure and build their brands without having to open their wallets every time. Focusing on free or low-cost channels can alleviate financial burden while still providing excellent visibility, and you can never go wrong by presenting a friendly face to your customers.