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What Small Businesses Need to Know About Developing a Brand

What Small Businesses Need to Know About Developing a Brand?


If I asked you the name of your business, you could probably respond without a second thought. But what if I were to ask you about your brand?

What is the story you would tell, the mission you want to achieve, and the unique characteristics that set your business apart from your competitors?

You’d probably need a bit more time, but it would be time well spent.

Branding is a powerful tool. It can turn first-time customers into loyal followers and long-time customers into word-of-mouth marketers.

Branding, when done masterfully, is the reason we apply “Chapstick” to soothe dry lips, eat “Popsicles” to cool down on a hot day, and “Google” the answer to life’s most pressing questions.

Needless to say, brand identity is an important component to your business.

 

What Small Businesses Need to Know About Developing a Brand

 

Picture Courtesy 4 Compelling Brand Stories You Should Be Telling

 

How Can You Grow Your Brand?

Its clear brand development is important, but how do you build it into your marketing efforts? There are numerous answers to that question, but the following often represent the most common and impactful way to increase brand awareness:

  • Content Marketing: In many circles, content is considered the leading way to do everything from improving organic search results to, as you guessed it, increase brand awareness.

Through this method, well-curated articles, blog posts, videos, white papers, etc. are used to increase brand credibility. Content is then distributed through various channels, including email, social media, and on the brand’s website or blog.

 

 

Picture Courtesy18 Types of Content Marketing You Can Use To Grow Your Business

Ultimately content works to show your brand as a source of knowledge, whether it pertains to industry trends or customer needs.

 

  • Social Media Advertising: Social media allows business owners to leverage posts, shares, stories, and comments to engage directly with existing and potential customers. While much of that interaction is free, there are additional paid advertising options that can help small business owners take advantage of social media advertising to increase reach.

 

Picture CourtesyBest Social Media Management Tools – No More Social Media Babysitting

Many social media platforms, including LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat offer paid advertising opportunities that base ad placement on user data. This can place your brand in front of a specific audience base or target user.

 

  • Charitable Initiatives: Companies like PetSmart, TOMs, and REI have long attracted customers through their dedication to philanthropic initiatives. By doing so, they’ve associated their brands with a specific mission – helping pets, clothing children, or saving the environment.

When “giving” initiatives are leveraged correctly, they highlight your brand’s mission and show your commitment to goodwill.

As such, your brand gains notoriety among audiences that share similar interests or philanthropic goals.

 

 

Picture Courtesy: Top 10 Best Free SEO Tools To instantly Improve Your Google Ranking in 2019

 

  • Search Engine Marketing (SEM): Today, SEM refers to any type of paid search efforts and has become an umbrella term used to refer to pay-per-click (PPC) and cost-per-click (CPC) marketing strategies.

Through this method, you purchase ad space on search engine result pages (SERPS) on Google, Bing, etc.

Instead of ranking organically for specific keywords, SEM allows your brand to show up at the top of a SERP, presenting your brand to highly targeted audiences.

You Know How to Grow It, But How Do You Pay for It?


While each of these methods can help you increase brand awareness, they often come at a price. Social media and SEM ads are often paid promotions that are based on the number of clicks.

Content marketing typically requires you to hire a writer or work with a freelancer or content agency. Similarly, charitable efforts will often require a strong advertising budget on top of donations.

In short, brand development, like any other marketing effort, will likely require capital — though it’s often money well spent. If you’re considering ramping up your branding effort but need additional capital, here are a few financing options:

  • Business Credit Cards: Business credit cards can be a great option if you plan on paying off our balance quickly or can take advantage of a 0% introductory APR offer. Plus, with the right business rewards credit card, you can earn points, miles, or cash back.

 

  • Small Business Loans: A small business loan will provide access to a single lump sum of money that can be used to manage a variety of business expenses, including branding efforts.

 

With this option, you’ll be required to make monthly payments for the life of the loan, which can range anywhere from a few months (short term) to several years (long term).

 

  • Business Line of Credit: Business lines of credit are considered revolving debt and can offer much-needed flexibility. If approved, you’ll gain access to a line of credit that you can draw from as needed. You’ll only be responsible for making payments on what you use, plus any interest.

 

Branding is essential to the growth and success of your company. It breeds interest, engagement, and loyalty, all of which play a vital role in increasing revenue.

Developing your brand does, however, requires an investment, and any efforts should include a thorough review of your resources, working capital, and available financing options.

This blog post has been contributed by  Andrew from LendEDU – a consumer education website. Andrew has plenty of experience working in a small business environment. 

Andrew writes engaging and informative content for readers looking to find information about topics such as student loans, credit cards, personal loans, and small business financing.

Andrew’s work has been featured in Market Watch, Bankrate, The Penny Hoarder, and the Lacrosse Tribune.

 

 

 

 

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