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How can Small Businesses Improve their Brand Image?

It can be exceptionally difficult for small businesses to gain a foothold in their chosen target markets in the early years of trading. Customers may prefer to make purchases from more established firms who they have dealt with previously or may not even be aware of your company’s existence. As such, it can be a significant success for any small company to successfully navigate through the first few years of operation and to begin to generate meaningful levels of revenue and profitability. However, it is important to recognize the power of brand image in fueling the ongoing success of a firm. Small businesses with a strong and positive brand image will often be favored by customers who may choose their goods and services over the offerings of competitors.

In this article, some unique ways in which small businesses can improve their brand image will be explored.

How can small businesses improve brand image?

Fundraising for charities

A key way to improve the brand image of any small business is by supporting charitable organizations. This helps to demonstrate to consumers that your company has positive goals for the wider society (and is not purely focused on its own profitability) and is aiming to help support local communities.

Ideally the goals and mission of the chosen charity will resonate with the values of your target market, so it is important to have a clear understanding of your customers’ beliefs and perceptions. Once you have chosen the charity you will be supporting, it is important to set a goal for the amount of funds you plan to raise. Consider adding a fundraising thermometer to your company website, which will indicate the progress that is being made towards the target amount. This will help to publicize the ongoing fundraising that is taking place and will increase the goodwill from your customer base.

This charitable activity can also help to drive sales of the company’s products. If you donate a small proportion of your sales revenues from each item to the charity, customers may be inspired to purchase your products more often, so they help to support the fundraising initiative.

This type of sales-linked fundraising benefits both your business and the charity—and is a key way to create a positive brand image with your target market and the wider community.

Adopting Sustainable Practices

In 2023, there is a growing need for all businesses to adopt sustainable practices. Evidence suggests that modern consumers will prefer to trade with organizations that can demonstrate they are lowering their carbon footprint, reducing waste, or using sustainable or recycled materials in their products, to name a few examples. In fact, research indicates that 87% of consumers have a more positive image of a company that can demonstrate sustainable business practices.

In addition, the millennial generation is particularly concerned with sustainability and will actively choose brands that take steps to protect the environment and limit any adverse impacts on the planet from their business processes. As millennials will soon account for that majority of consumers, it is vitally important to be able to demonstrate sustainable practices to appeal to this important demographic and cultivate a positive brand image.