The Best Branding Practices for a Small Business
As a small business owner, think about branding as the creation of an identity for your business. Through branding, you can influence what people think of when they see your logo or products or simply hear your business mentioned. Branding activities are many and need to be well-thought-out. It’s more than just creating a logo.
A powerful brand makes it easier to sell products because customers already perceive your company positively. A brand creation strategy takes time to execute. The range of options requires consistency for audiences to form firm beliefs about a brand.
A small business lacks the resources of a big corporation, but it can still execute a successful branding campaign. If you're a small business owner, here are some best practices to follow on your branding journey.
Create a Visual Identity
The visual identity of your business is a big part of your brand. This is especially true today because audiences are likely to interact with your brand on multiple channels. There must be reasoning behind your brand colors and logo, too.
If you're a sole proprietorship with no intentions of scaling, you can use online DIY tools to create a logo. However, if you intend to scale to a mass market, hire a branding professional to capture important elements of your brand in the logo and choice of colors.
Your website is another important visual communication tool. Unless you have industry-grade web design skills, hire a professional to build a visually appealing and functional website. However, you should be heavily involved in the website’s content development so that it truly represents your brand in voice and substance.
If you've already built the logo on your own, you can share it with your web designer. However, sending the logo in JPG format via email may cause quality distortion. It’s useful to convert from PDF to Word to edit the file before sending it for review.
Think About Your Brand Story
A brand story tells your audience who you are, your beginnings, and what you're about. It helps your customers connect with you. For example, consider a business that was built by an immigrant from scratch and passed down through two generations. The business can capture the element of grit and humble beginnings in its story, which most people relate to. It makes them want to tell the story on your behalf.
Social Media Presence
A social media presence is especially important for B2C businesses. It gives you visibility to new customers while also providing a way to connect with existing customers. Through social media you can collect feedback on your products and monitor customers’ attitudes toward your brand. Social media helps your branding efforts by providing a space for you to share information about your story, new products, social responsibility efforts, and other important news. If you're unsure about how to leverage social media for branding, engage a professional to craft a social media strategy for you.
Be Strategic About Brand Creation
Creating a brand requires careful thought and precision in execution. All branding activities must work in synergy to build the image you desire in your customers’ eyes.
To learn more about brand building, consider joining your local chamber of commerce to meet like-minded business owners.
This Hot Deal is promoted by Ocean City, Maryland Chamber of Commerce.