Many companies don’t quite believe in the power of branding or, in other words, underestimate the potential of having consistent and coherent branding in both their internal and external operations, especially startups or struggling businesses that are caught up in the hassle of business management duties and details. Some companies overlook branding efforts altogether because they view themselves in the light of being just a business, not a brand, thinking that branding is meant only for the whale-sized corporates with national and international recognition.
Branding, however, is considered one of the top imperatives of starting and running a business, regardless of size, niche, or challenges. It singlehandedly can increase any business’s value, motivate employees, confirm the company’s credibility in the market, and ultimately, attract leads to becoming loyal regulars and brand advocates.
What is branding anyway?
Branding is everything the company does to help its targeted audience identify its presence and offerings in the crowd. Branding, in simple terms, is the overall business and marketing concepts, including tangible and non-tangible initiatives that collectively shape the brand and the people’s perception of it.
You can think of branding as creating a particular idea or image of the company’s personality, looks, and behaviors in the minds of both the employees and audiences. This can be strategically done by combining elements such as visual identity and logo, vision and mission, values, promises, personality, and tone of voice across each and every marketing communication held by the company; so that it can sustain a unified and cohesive brand experience at every touchpoint.
Why does Branding for Small Businesses matter?
If you are unsure why you should invest and fuel such so many resources into branding for your startup and small business, here are brief 4 reasons why is branding important for small businesses, and why you should do it today
1. Branding Improves Recognition
It might sound too obvious to mention, but branding is evidently one of the biggest reasons people become familiar with any business. People trust what they know. The smarter the company positions and displays itself to the right masses, the more they positively perceive, memorize, and best of all, value its presence.
You can’t expect your target audience to pick you if you are completely unknown to them -or worse, irrelevant!
Yes, you might get lucky sometimes. But in business, you don’t want to really rely on luck that much. When you harness the right message in the right context, design, and tone, your audience will be more likely to take notice of you and actually listen to what you have to offer them. By the time, as simple as a brief glance might be enough for them to recognize and eventually choose you over the rest.
2. Branding Builds Trust
Customer Trust should be any company’s Northstar, and it’s the ultimate measurement by which the entire business success is scaled, in both growth and competition.
Solid brand identity -in its visual and behavioural dimensions- consistent across all physical or digital platforms and communications assign a great deal of credibility to the company, making the entire business come across as legitimate and trustworthy to the targeted audience.
When customers notice a professional-looking brand that carries itself professionally and reliably in every aspect, they naturally feel the comfort and choose it over a disorganized, amateur one.
At the end of the day, they are giving their hard-earned money and definitely don’t want it to go down the drain, so they -by instinct- must trust this company for their time and money.
3. Branding builds Emotional ties
Look around you; hundreds of businesses are emerging every time you blink, and the competition is becoming way fiercer and wilder than ever. Since people often purchase upon emotions, not logic, you always want to target beyond your audience’s wallets and aim to intrigue their hearts and minds, regardless of your business size, scope, or development stage.
By thoroughly understanding your clientele, you will get a grip on what attracts them on both business and personal levels, how they react to specific messages, and what they expect in exchange for their time and money.
Building an emotional tie with your audience starts as early as choosing the company name. It evolves every step of the way, from the best logo, colour and font choices to the promotional copies and interaction with them. Your duty should be to combine the relevant elements to craft the right, consistent messaging that can elicit the preferred set of emotions you wish your audience have when they see or engage with you. The primary goal is to go beneath the thick layers of their hearts, and spark a particular and consistent feeling, that they will later connect with your business. This connection will be the super advantage why they choose you every time.
4. Branding Delivers Results
Even the most selfless businesses in the world look for profit. Boosting growth and delivering real revenue lay at the core of branding; it won’t be an exaggeration to claim that it initially emerged for that purpose.
With a clear identity, aligned with a proper brand promise and messaging, branding helps found a strong company reputation and authority in the market scene, eventually resulting in a remarkable boost in sales and revenue rates. Besides materialistic profits, carefully-done branding cultivates a unique company culture and unifies audiences.
Moreover, a well-established brand is an attractive investment opportunity and gives more weight, longer lifetime, and higher value to the business in the industry.
Brands are like humans; everyone is different. Today, branding became everything and a non-negotiation topic. And since good branding does good business, Take all the time you need to create a brand for your business that speaks for its personality, ethics, and culture.
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