Here’s how to develop a brand strategy for your business:
Start With a Good Logo
A logo helps distinguish your business from all the others out there that sell similar products and services. The pictorial nature of a logo – even if it’s just words printed in a stylized way – helps customers remember you and helps them think of your company as an established, reputable small business. Your logo should look professional, and optionally, include an image that’s in some way associated with your industry. Unless you are an artist or are very proficient in graphic arts, it’s best to have your logo professionally designed for you. There are many sites online that provide that service at reasonable prices.
Once you have a logo, be sure to include it on everything associated with your business. It should be on your website, social media pages, business card, letterhead, envelopes, fliers, giveaways and print advertising. Try to think of the colors in your logo as your brand colors, too, and use those colors whereever appropriate (such as your website.)
Create a Slogan or Tagline
Slogans (also called taglines) are very short phrases that express what your business is about and – more importantly – a beneficial result your customers derive from the business or product. When you create a slogan, it helps distinguish your business from others and make it more memorable. M & M’s slogan, “Melts in your mouth, not your hand,” is one example. Another: Bounty’s tagline, “The quicker picker upper.” Use the slogan where ever you use your logo, and consider having a version of your logo created that includes the slogan.
Design a Tool
Have you ever taken one of those online quizzes? They’re fun, engaging, and immensely shareable. But they don’t have to be, “who is your ideal mate” type quizzes. They could be something that the customer finds value in relating to your business. If you’re in the roofing business, it could be a quiz to rate how much life is left on their roof, for example. You’ll likely need a programmer to help with this but that isn’t as expensive as you might think.
Employ Social Media Ads
If you want to get your business in front of the eyes of potential customers, you have to advertise. If you have no budget for paid advertising, the chances of gaining traction are slim. Even $50 per month for social media advertising is better than nothing.
Put E-mail Advertising to Work
A recent report published on Adweek found that 49% of people still prefer brands to contact them through e-mail. You can use social media, text messaging, or phone calls but all of those combined were only 22% of people’s first choice. Look at Mailchimp or one of the other e-mail marketing platforms to get started.
Be Responsive to Your Customers
Sadly, we live in a world where outstanding customer service is becoming an exception rather than a norm. Your brand will stay top-of-mind to your customers if they look forward to dealing with you. Chic Fil A has made a name for itself not just with great food but with equally great customer service.
When somebody writes to you on social media, respond right away. Same with e-mail. If they call, call them back. If they’re unhappy, make it right—even if they’re not entirely right. Give away free product from time to time, and be a part of the community. Simply, establish your brand as a company that absolutely loves people