8 Simple Steps to Branding

In our ad-cluttered world, strong branding is critical.  You want to stand out and guarantee that you’re the first source in your  particular industry to come to your customers minds. Before you spend even a single penny on marketing or advertising, define your brand identity.  This is your products “personality.” Creating a memorable brand and one that stands out from the crowd can be as simple as these eight steps:

1. Make sure it fits your business.  This brand will be with you for a long time.  You want a brand that d doesn’t embarrass you and one that you are comfortable with.  This is your time to tap into your creativity.  Discover a better way for your business and share it with others.

2. Stay on top and be consistent with your brand because you will want to use it everywhere. A brand must consistently provide satisfaction and quality to be successful.  To create customer preference it must meaningfully distinguish itself from competition.  Your brand must appeal to individual beliefs, attitudes, and lifestyles within your target audience.  It must be convenient, easily accessible and relevant.  Create a website with your brand and get new business cards.

3. Keep promises.  It is more important to keep promises than to have good intentions.  Your brand is a promise.  It is the act of devising a promise your company makes to the entire world.  Your branding promise is the strategy that differentiates your business from other brand promises under the link called “your category.”

4. Make sure it will work in social media.  Use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and any other social media source that will give you new opportunities and connections.  Stay active on them.

5. Continue developing your knowledge, skills and network.  Branding isn’t just about advertising.  It is also about bringing your knowledge to the marketplace.  Subscribe to blogs, download eBooks  go to the library, checkout the bookstore, and attend as many events pertaining to marketing and your industry as much as possible.

6. Create your own content.  Write about what people are interested in and what they will most likely tell others about.  Writing one article won’t cut it.  You need to sustain a persistent product.

7. Analyze your competition.  In order to be different than your competitors you need to study them closely.  In order to create a distinctive brand with long-term competitive advantages you will need to understand the dynamics and strategies behind competing brands.   Find out your competitors strengths and weaknesses, how committed your competitors are to different market segments, and how consumers perceive your competition.

8. Have fun with it and keep a sense of humor. You will need it!

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