Sometimes we get so busy with the day-to-day, nuts-and-bolts parts of business that we forget the big picture. One part of that big picture is branding. Regular brand management can ensure that when consumers think of your company, they have positive thoughts.
What Is Your Brand?
Your brand is what makes your business different from competitors in the same field, and reputation influences buying decisions. The things you do to make consumers think positively about your company are the things you’re doing that make your brand unique.
For example, consumers have several choices when they want to purchase hardware. There are several companies that are trying to brand themselves as the hardware purveyors that consumers should choose. Whether those companies have commercials with famous actors, small vignettes, or other means of attracting positive attention, they are constantly working to brand themselves as the hardware store of choice.
Brands are a promise to the consumer. A company that manages its brand well informs consumers that will provide them with quality and credibility in their purchases. Brands that work to attain a high level of name respect are more likely to bounce back from a setback—think stolen credit cards and stolen personal information—while those that face setbacks without solid branding often cease to exist.
Steps to Ensure Solid Brand Management
Whether considering brand management on a city scale, a regional scale, or a national scale, there are several considerations a business should have.
Public relations is a big part of creating a successful brand.
This includes taking part in traditional advertising on television and radio, where personality is easier to convey and attitude can be shared in 15-, 30-, or 60-second slots. Public relations can also take part by being seen as an integral part of the community. Participate in the Jim’s Carwash 5k run to sponsor a pet shelter or to support a local homeless shelter. The company name attracts attention in a positive way.
Effective social media can only help brand image.
Attract people by making positive comments about the community and people in it, and tie sales information to the tweets. Facebook and Instagram can be used similarly. Two important aspects of social media are that they must be updated regularly—you have to appear that you care enough to keep things current. Never stir up controversy or include humor that your readers might consider iffy. Your job is to expand your range of customers, not give people excuses to avoid your business.
Don’t be afraid to seek professional guidance in building and maintaining a brand.
Usually public relations and advertising companies will give assessments about what they can do for a company and how they will advise you to build your brand without charge. Consider whether their help will grow your profits. Often, these experts know ways to grow most businesses and they are worth the expense. When you have them on board, it will be easier for them to help you if something negative happens as they probably have experience with brand image.
Brands are very important to business.
It isn’t just national restaurants and car makers that need public awareness. Every company can benefit as long as that company is willing to do the work to maintain the brand. Make the first step toward establishing your brand identity by investing in business cards that will wow your connections.