Is your business brand looking pretty bland? Time to spice things up! Here are five angles that you can take to create an unforgettable impression of your business and brand name.
But before I get to the list, let’s clear up some confusion about branding…
Stop Trying to Be Remarkable!
A good business brand has few functions that it must accomplish:
- Conveying what your company is about, in other words, what kinds of products/services do you offer?
- Conveying the qualities and characteristics that make your offer valuable
- Establishing your business as a credible source for what you are offering
- Making your business recognizable and rememberable in some way to the people you are trying to target.
That’s it. It doesn’t matter what’s going on in social media, the Internet, mobile technologies, etc, etc. This will never change.
Yet, many business owners struggle with their brand. They tend to either trip over their own self-doubt, or they are out of touch with the things that their target market finds important and interesting.
Realize that having a successful brand doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be radically different. It doesn’t mean you have to change yourself, either. And, I know some of you will throw purple cows at me… “Wait, Susan, aren’t we supposed to stand out in our niche; aren’t we supposed to be Remarkable?”
The truth is, you really DON’T have to be remarkable. Maybe that approach worked ten years ago, when everything online was more shiny and new- when people weren’t so jaded, and there just weren’t so many businesses trying so hard to stand out (Hey, it’s not easy being purple.)
Today, if you want to succeed, then you better be rememberable. The people who matter have to remember you when they are in need of the kinds of products and services you’re providing or when they are feeling the weight of the problem that you are offering to solve.
There is a palpable difference between being rememberable as opposed to merely standing out. You need to actively touch your customers in some way, to make an impression where it counts, to build relationships, and relate to your customers as real people, with real needs, wants, and dreams. You need to know how to press the right buttons, to know what problems to solve and how best to communicate it all.
5 Tips Build to An Unforgettable Business Brand
That said, here are five different angles that anyone can take to strengthen the weakest, most boring business brand. Pick one or two of the following options to focus on and look for ways to emphasize and highlight these qualities wherever you can- both on your website and off, infused in your content and your calls-to-action. Where possible, you may even want to test your target market’s response along the way, to see if you are truly conveying what you want to.
1. Is there a service or a set of skills that you provide that competitors don’t? Are there things that you know are valuable to your customers, but your competition either doesn’t provide them or highlight them? Do you offer free setup or training? Do you take the time to explain something that most of your customers find complicated? Do you come with a particular expertise or skill set that few of your competitors can match?
2. Can you bring in your personal experiences? What interesting things have you done or learned about? Perhaps you are a life coach who has competed in marathons or triathlons, an animal trainer who has worked with exotic animals, a web designer who has successfully run online businesses or who has studied art.
3. Do you have an exceptional personality or business culture? This is about who you are, what you stand for, and how you act. In other words, what makes you, you? What are your values? Though you may have a hard time marketing your business based on values and personality alone, you can make sure that these qualities run throughout the products and services you offer as well as the content that you create.
For example, I know a document imaging company that was approached one day by a business interested in scanning a piece of art- which was of an unusual size and material. Instead of sending the potential client away, the company spent the morning carefully testing their scanning process and eventually scanning in the work. This company could highlight the fact that they are not afraid to test new things, nor go out of their way to work around potential problems in order to customize their service.
4. Can you make your target audience part of your brand? If you have a hyper-targeted niche, or if you are focusing on a very distinct group of people, then you can use that fact to help to define your brand. Some examples in this action include: being a planner for a specific group of alternative-themed weddings and parties, offering vegan or region-specific catering, or developing a mobile app specifically for food cart vendors.
5. Do you have an “alter ego” or a symbol that you can use to identify the business? Do you work under a notable online persona, pen name, or caricature? What about an easily identifiable image, idea, or a symbol you can use to represent your business, such as Traffic Generation Cafe’s inviting cup of coffee, or the name Blogging Wizard?
In short, building a rememberable business brand successfully may not be an exact science, but it get’s pretty close. Once you understand the goals you are trying achieve- i.e. attracting and connecting to the right people- as well the the perceived value of what you have to offer, your brand won’t be so easily forgettable.