Apple, Coca-Cola, Revlon, McDonald’s – when you hear names like those, you can’t help but think of certain things. For instance, McDonald’s is practically synonymous with concepts like family and convenience. You know what their logo looks like, and you’re aware of who Ronald McDonald is. Even if you’ve never eaten at a McDonald’s, you can probably name at least a few of their products right off the top of your head, as well – like the Big Mac or the Happy Meal.
That’s an example of effective brand-building at work. Everyone is aware of brands like McDonald’s and knows what they can expect if they choose them. If you’re a business owner, then that’s what you want, too – a brand your target audience recognizes, trusts, and is likely to choose if they’re ever in the market for what you sell. Here’s how you build one.
Decide what your brand is all about
Whether you’ve already launched your business or are still in the brainstorming phase, you need to be clear on what your company, products, and services stand for. How does your brand aim to make people’s lives better? What problems does it solve, and what does it bring to the table that other companies in the same niche don’t?
Everything from your company logo to your website’s design needs to echo your core values and mission as a company. Make sure you’re on the right track by asking members of your target demographic for feedback on your brand, packaging, products, and so forth.
Establish your presence online
A solid online presence isn’t just a good idea these days. It’s an absolute must if you’re serious about making a success of your business. Start by building a terrific website that’s streamlined, appealing, well-designed, and easy to navigate. Fill it with engaging content that’s fully optimized for search engine visibility with relevant keywords. (A good keyword rank checker can help you identify the right options to use.)
You’ll also want to plant flags on all or most of the big social networks, as your would-be customers will definitely be expecting to see you there. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are musts for just about any brand, but you should also consider whether others might be a good fit. If your brand is a perfect fit for Pinterest, LinkedIn, or similar platforms, get set up on those, too.
Be consistent in your efforts
While every successful brand is different as far as what they offer their customers, there are a few key things all of them have in common. Consistency is perhaps the most important of those. Think of literally any brand you like, are loyal to, and feel comfortable recommending to others. They’ve earned the trust you have in them by being reliable, consistent, and responsive.
Show that your brand can be trusted, as well, by demonstrating that in all that you do. Be authentic, and go out of your way to engage with those who visit your website or interact with your company posts on social media. Keep your company blog up to date according to a predictable content production schedule, and post about topics that reflect your mission statement. Balance sales-oriented posts about new products or service features with posts that simply are meant to be entertaining, helpful, or newsworthy.
Spread your brand by thinking outside the box
Ultimately, a company will only be as strong as the connections it creates, so give some thought to your brand awareness strategy. Start by associating yourself with other strong brands that can help you build credibility. Build relationships with the people behind those brands, and pursue mutually beneficial collaborations where it makes sense.
Work on effective ways to forge strong connections with existing or potential customers, as well. Some techniques to consider include offering freemium content, holding contests, or giving away cool swag people will love. Explore options like PPC ads and referral programs that can help keep your brand growing, as well.
Once you’ve launched your brand and begun the work of making it a success, be sure to evaluate the results of your efforts frequently and make changes where necessary. Eventually, you’ll settle on what works as you move forward into the future.
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