I recently met with a prospect who was interested in hiring me to help her grow her small business and advise on her small business marketing plan or as she put it, to “create a brand”.
Well as the conversation progressed, I got a bit of a surprise. What she really wanted was someone to create her company’s logo! And there lies one of the most popular misconception of brand strategy for many small business owners when they create their small business marketing plan.
Your logo is only a part of your brand, not your entire brand strategy…sounds simple but we often overlook it because our logo is the face of our brand; what consumers see. A logo plays an integral part of your small business brand strategy and I suggest you put some thought into it –a logo should be simple and have some meaning but there is so much more to your brand.
So, here are 3 simple principles to consider when creating your small business brand as part of your small business marketing plan:
1) Live and breathe your brand.
Often the best brands are those that run the simplest brand strategies. It’s not about the flashiness, the glossiness or cleverness that makes the brand a leader, it is the truth, the honest truth. If you are going to make a statement about your brand, then you better live-up-to-it. The old adage of “If you are going to talk the talk, you better walk the walk” should be on the top-of-your-mind when you create your brand. What can you stand by? What can you honestly fulfill? Customers want that security of knowing that what your promise as a brand is what you deliver. An example for me is BMW. I drove my friends “Beemer” some time ago and it is truly an “ultimate driving machine”.
2) “You gotta have faith”
If you boil it down to its elements, one of the reasons a sales transaction occurs is because the customer has faith in you providing the best product or service to them; what you are selling. A strong brand creates that faith. Consider this…why do most small businesses strive to get that one big client who the marketplace is familiar with, even potentially as a lost leader? Mostly for the validation to create that faith in the brand of the small business owner; the opportunity for the small business owner to say, “see, the Toronto Maple Leafs buy my product, so why shouldn’t you?” So, when you create your brand – think always of building faith in that brand and you do that by living and breathing your brand (see #1 above).
3) It’s Michael not Mike
For small businesses, naming your business is very important to how the marketplace will understand your business, your brand. If you are a start-up or a relatively young company,
your company name should clearly describe to the marketplace what you do. Now, there are some exceptions to this: for example, Google and Yahoo! But they have huge marketing budgets to market their company. However, as a small business owner, you should stick to this rule. Try and include your product or service in your name but don’t make it too long. Think of what happened to “FedEx” – originally, it was “Federal Express” but they surrendered and shortened its official name to what it is known as today.
Be Real. Grow your business.
Reality Business Consulting (RBC) (www.realityconsulting.ca) is a Toronto Web Design and Small Business Marketing Company that helps small businesses grow by designing profitable, creative and practical small business marketing plans and web marketing strategies, including WordPress small business website design. Having already successfully co-founded a technology and eCommerce company, as the principle of Reality Business Consulting, I understand the challenges and needs of a small business.
If you are searching for a professional and customer-focused small business marketing company with extensive work in marketing planning, WordPress small business website design, contact us for a “Reality Check”; a no-obligation, no-charge consultation.