So you want to build a better brand for your company. How clearly is your company’s image currently BRANDED? In order to do this we first must understand the difference between Marketing, Advertising, and Identification.
In part 1 we looked at the 3 Branding tools that make up your company’s brand. In Part 2 we will discuss specific tips on how to use these tools to help build your company’s brand.
3 Branding tools
The American Marketing Association defines Marketing as: “Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.” Wow that’s a mouthful.
I believe marketing is the Umbrella over PR, Sales, and Advertising. In this 2 part article I would like to focus on the third area of marketing, Advertising.
2. Advertising is the art of buying customers. Advertising is just an opportunity for you to buy customers. Step 1 is to have a marketing strategy/plan. Step 2 is to keep track of your advertising and ask customers how they heard of your company. Step 3 is to calculate the acquisition costs of each customer. We do this by dividing the total advertising dollars spent, by the number of customers you acquired for each advertising campaign. Test, measure, and tweak your advertising to continually improve this number.
I believe small businesses need to be focusing on converting prospects into customers. The only people who care about the name of my business is me and maybe my mother. Everyone else along with your prospects are asking themselves…How does this benefit me? What’s in it for me? Make sure all your advertising campaigns reflect this understanding.
So, how do we use Advertising in our small businesses? Answer: Very carefully. Advertising is most expensive lead generation strategy available. It’s unfortunate that new business owners think that this is the strategy that they need to take in order to grow their business. I’m not saying it doesn’t work, in fact I have had many advertising campaigns that went very well for me. I am just issuing a word of caution that advertising should be looked at as a strategy, just not the one and only lead generation strategy. It should be thought of as an investment and an opportunity to buy customers. Whether its direct mail, TV, Radio, or internet advertising make sure to test and measure your investment every step of the way.
Yes, that’s great if you get a few prospects to call because they saw your logo or business name somewhere. Using your logo or business name for identification is a completely different purpose than for advertising purposes. What do you want your audience to feel when they see your logo or business name? Achieving this is 80% of your Brands job. If they feel appropriate about your brand, they’ll reach out and contact you with the other 20%.
So, How do we use Identification in our small businesses? Below are some low-cost examples, and in my opinion a great place to start when it comes to building your brand.
-Business cards, brochures, fridge magnets, promotional gifts.
-Vehicle signage, building signage, window display, sidewalk signage
-Nice logo & uniforms
-Put logo on Equipment & Tools that the customer will come in contact with.