Branding is about being remembered. It’s not easy to get your own brand recognized by the public. Big companies spend a lot of time and money to get recognized across the country. People know the logo on their soda can immediately, but those companies have been putting out ads for many decades. You can create a brand for your small business, too. Since you probably don’t have a big budget, here are some tips for branding your small business effectively and efficiently.
You need a motto, a mission and a creative saying. This needs to be an easy and quick phrase that identifies you with the public. “ABC Sports shoes, on the right foot,” or “XYZ Herbal Drink, drink to your health!”
It’s important to stretch your advertising as far as possible, and this means choosing the right media. You need to find your target audience and focus there. If you run a chain of kid’s toy stores, then don’t spend $500 on one big ad in the local newspaper. Instead, spend $50 each on an ads in 10 local school newspapers, and buy ad spots in the school sports/event fliers. Target your ads.
Get Seen, not Clicked
Try to get banners placed on as many sites as possible within your target audience sphere. Most businesses use the click-through method, where they only pay sites for the clicks they receive. This doesn’t guarantee many sites will place you on their pages. Instead, buy some real estate outright on their sites. Offer to pay a flat amount for a prominent ad to run all month on as many relevant sites as possible. Get out there and be everywhere that relates to your industry.
Have a slick and simple logo designed for your business. Make it easy to recognize, and use it on everything. Have it printed on your bags, business cards and all your ads and posters. Branding comes with repeated views. The consumer needs to see your logo over and over again.
Sponsor local events to get some attention. Often the local media will cover these events, so you get free advertising. If it’s a charity event, you also get some extra goodwill in the community.
Newsletters and Press Releases
Create a newsletter via email and snail mail, and try to build a large subscription base. Issue press releases with new company information as often as possible.
Brand an assortment of inexpensive items, from pens and pencils to magnets and key chains – all with your logo. Give these out like candy to your customers. Spread the word with little gadgets bearing your logo and website address. Have T-shirts printed with your logo and tagline. Spending $1000 on these items will go a lot further than the same amount spent in print advertising. These small gifts will remind customers of you each time they get used.
Branding is abount remembering. Don’t let consumers forget you’re out there. Bombard them with ads, freebies, events and press releases on a regular basis. Regular and consistent exposure wins the race.
More from this contributor:
Balancing and Managing Your Small Business Inventory
Building a Solid Customer Base for Your Small Business
How a Lawyer Can Help a Small Business