Ever feel like your business is on a treadmill; sending out marketing messages that often have little engagement or impact?
You’re not alone. With so many brands fighting for space, it can be hard for your voice to be heard. So, how can your business differentiate itself and stand out in a saturated market?
The first step is to go back to basics and build a strong brand identity. This is the equivalent of your business’s personality, and it should provide the foundation for all your marketing efforts.
Your brand encapsulates your values, the quality of your products, the words you use, your logo, and other design assets that make up the image of your brand.
A strong brand is important as it’s the thing that consumers resonate with most. It needs to be consistent across everything you do so that your audience can connect with you on multiple touchpoints.
Research shows that brand trust clearly drives growth, with 61 percent of respondents prepared to advocate if they fully trust a brand in order to buy from them. And 86% say that authenticity is a key factor when deciding what brands they like and support.
How can you build your business reputation and develop a strong brand that people recognise and trust? Follow our branding tips to help you reconnect with your audience and be heard above the noise.
Define what makes your brand unique
Start at the beginning and redefine what makes your brand individual. Ask yourself:
- What do we do that others don’t?
- Where do we add value to people’s lives?
- What type of people benefit from our products or services?
- What do we care about?
- How do we go the extra mile?
- What do we want to achieve?
- What do we want to be known for?
By understanding the answers to these questions, you can start to map out your value proposition. This should sum up what your business does, what it brings to the market, and how it helps people in a short statement.
Here are some examples of great value propositions:
- Apple iPhone: the experience is the product
- Uber: the smartest way to get around
Map out your audience
You’ve already started exploring your target audience with the questions above. Now it’s time to drill this down into customer personas.
Customer personas are fictitious representations of the typical people who would buy from your business. By defining who they are and what challenges they face you can identify ways to solve their pain points.
Aim to create around three to six different personas, mapping out:
- Basic demographics – age, location, salary
- Background information – family, relationships, job title
- Habits – how they shop, devices, websites, and apps they use
- Challenges – what problems do they face, how do they look for solutions?
- Your role – how can your business help them? How and where would you connect with them?
Use these personas as a sense check in any sales and marketing activity from now on. Question which persona you’re addressing, and if the marketing activity doesn’t work for any of them, rethink your strategy.
Build your brand reputation
Good brand reputation is all about what people think of you. Done well, it builds customer loyalty and trust and gives you a competitive edge.
Start by understanding what’s being said about your brand. Take a systematic approach, monitoring the following sources on a regular basis:
- Social listening – follow your brand’s name and most-used hashtags on social media to see what people are saying about you.
- Google Alerts – it’s easy to set up Google Alerts for your business name and any key spokespeople in your industry. You’ll get daily roundups of any media mentions of these keywords.
- Google Analytics – keep an eye on the referring domains sending traffic to your website. Investigate any unusual spikes to see why that site has linked to yours.
- Customer services call logs/emails/chatbots etc – look for any trends in negative sentiment via these sources to address them before they go public.
- Online reviews – be aware if customers leave reviews on Google, Facebook, Trustpilot, Glassdoor, or other online review portals.
- Other sources – is there a Reddit page for your product or a forum for your kind of business? Keep an eye on them so you can quickly spot any mentions of your brand.
By spotting any mentions of your brand early on, you can respond at the moment and avoid any negativity spiralling. Keep your tone positive and look for a solution to show that you’re addressing their concerns.
For more advice, read our guide on how to protect your brand’s reputation in the modern digital world.
Tell your story
What is the story behind your business and how do you communicate this with your stakeholders? Is the story you tell people consistent?
Take a test and ask five people across your organisation what your company story is. Chances are, you’ll get five different responses.
If so, it’s time to develop a short elevator pitch with your team so you’re all singing from the same song sheet.
This is a short spiel about your business that you could deliver in the time it takes to ride an elevator – around 30 seconds. It’s deliberately short to make sure you focus on the essence of what your business is about.
Your value proposition, as well as your company mission and statement, will come in handy here. Drill it down to the essentials: WHY you exist, WHAT you do, and HOW you do it.
Once you’re happy with your elevator pitch, make sure it’s well communicated across the entire company. Your story should be at the heart of all communications, and your employees are important brand advocates.
How we can help you build your brand
Developing your brand takes time and insight to get right. At AMBITIOUS we work closely with B2B companies to understand what their business is about and how to build that into a strong brand.
Contact us today to arrange a call about how we can help your business build your brand.