As an independent contractor, you have many more responsibilities than the average employee working for someone else. You must be CEO, manager and employee all rolled into one hardworking freelancer. It's up to you to make sure that not only is all the work completed correctly and on time but also that prospective clients can remember you when they need what you have to offer. Without proper branding and marketing, the latter is nearly impossible.
Marketing 101: What is Branding?
In short, branding is the sum of what your business entails. For instance, it lets everyone know who you are and what you do at a glance. There are a couple of ways you can brand your business, and both are effective if done right. The first step in branding yourself as an independent contractor is choosing a name for your business.
What's in a Name, You Ask?
The name you choose should say it all -- one way or another. You can:
- Choose a name that instantly explains what you do. Be creative and witty so people remember it easily. A good example of a brand designed in this manner is Pawn America. Even if you've never heard of the company before, you can guess that they are a pawn shop operating in locations all across the country.
- Use your own name, but add a tagline that tells everyone what you do. A good example of this tactic is the Barnes & Noble bookstore. One of their taglines is "The Booksellers." You may not know that Barnes & Noble is a bookstore, but once you read the tagline, you have a pretty good idea.
Integrating Your Brand Into Your Marketing Efforts
Once you've come up with a name, tagline and logo that's eye-catching and memorable, it's time to put it to use. This is the point where you plaster your brand anywhere and everywhere possible. This is where branding and marketing work together. You tell anyone who will listen, and you treat every waking moment as if it were a promotional opportunity.
It might seem somewhat awkward for you, or even a bit annoying to close family and friends, but if you are to succeed, you must make a name for yourself that sticks in the minds of potential customers. Even if they don't need your services right away, you want them to recall your brand first when they do. Some good places to begin promoting your brand include your website and social media platforms, any print ads you place and on your business cards. The one-and-done approach doesn't work here; you must continually keep up this effort in order to have success.
The Importance of a Good Business Card
With most of today's marketing taking place online these days, it might seem a bit "old school" to hand out business cards to prospective customers. However, never underestimate the power of good old-fashioned print advertising. A computer, tablet or smartphone screen can only promote as long as the user has navigated to the appropriate page and is looking at it. A business card, on the other hand, is always handy, always available.
Why It Works
If you've created a snappy brand, and you place it on a quality business card, you've instantly created something people will remember. They can pull it out and refer to it anytime they want, and because it's so easy to carry around in a wallet or pocket, they are more likely to refer to it when they need what you're selling.
To request a free business card sample, contact SilkCards today. We are the online source for all your marketing and promotional materials.