How important is branding to you as a small business owner?
Do you think that branding is just an overrate dword and not actually a necessary business strategy?
In the world of today, it is not enough to have a unique product or offer impeccable service, there has to be an extra you are bringing. If you want to be sincere with your self you’d agree with me that the best of sales or marketing strategy isn’t going to pull the crowd that you desire if your product is not uniquely different from others in your industry.
Whether you are a business mogul, a small business owner or a beginner in the games of side hustle, a strong brand is all that you need to lock down your customers in a long-lasting relationship.
So What Exactly Is a Brand
The first bubble I will burst is the fact that A brand Isn’t a logo. A brand more of a unique experience that a customer has every time they come in contact with your business. It is how you make your customers feel when they interact with your business. Most small business owners are unconscious of their brand but this has a way of defining your business success path.
Let me illustrate with this personal experience of mine;
Earlier today, I went to Balogun Market with a pregnant friend of mine to buy baby stuff. The first shop we entered was the ideal shop to be in because they had everything. The shop was a perfect place for the ideal millennial mother. But after about thirty minutes of being in the shop, we were already uncomfortable with the lady’s aura. The seller became irritated that my friend was asking for more options and further explanation. You wouldn’t blame my friend though because she is a first time mum.
Eventually, we just paid for some stuff and hurried out of the shop. As we were looking for another shop to enter, an older woman approached us and asked that we check out her shop. We reluctantly went in just to fulfill all righteousness. My dear, we ended up laughing and talking so much with the older woman. She was kind enough to educate my friend about what to buy and what not to buy. When it was time to leave, my friend said; I will never enter aunty shop to buy something o, it’s only mummy shop that is the real plug.
In my head, see branding. Alhaja doesn’t know she’s building a brand but the experience we had is something we would willingly share with anyone that wants to buy baby stuff in Balogun. Did I forget to mention that we collected her business card? Well, yes we had to because we can’t miss this Alhaja mummy who has awesome customer service.
Related Reading: Strategies to Help You savage Your Brand during Crisis
Now you see that branding is not all about fine logo, beautiful shop, nice packaging and all. The first lady had all of these but her customer service experience wasn’t it at all.
This illustration is not to condemn the act of creating a logo and beautifying your physical store but to make you understand that most of these are just part of the branding process and not the whole.
The following are the elements that make up a brand;
- Unique packaging
- social media
- tagline and slogans
- product quality and pricing
- Excellent Customer Service
Related Post: Why Chik-A-Fil is a trusted Fast-food Brand
Why Should I Take Branding Serious as A Small Business Owner or As a one Man Business Mopol?
Seth Godin defines a brand as a set of expectations, memories, stories, and relationships that account for a customer’s decision to choose your product or service over another.
This definition fro me sums up why every business owner should make brand building a priority. Here are some notable benefits of building a strong brand for your business or for yourself as an individual;
- Having a brand sets you apart from every other people in your industry. So you all can be selling hair but having a strong brand makes you the hair vendor that everyone wants to do business with.
- A strong brand makes it very easy for people to trust you. Human beings have a way of going back to someone that they trust and feel safe with. So if they love the experience they have doing business with you they are definitely going to come back.
- A consistent Brand brings recognition. As much as your logo is not the only thing that makes up a brand but it is a strong element for your business. People easily recognize Dominos by their Logo from afar off before they even get close enough to read the name.
- A good brand that people trust will eventually lead to an increase in sales. If people love how they feel about you, they would tell more people to patronize you and more people will also inform their clique.
- Branding makes it easier for potential customers to find you. They see you on social media. You have lots of reviews from customers.
- One of the benefits of branding is that it creates a perceived value beyond the fair market value of an item. Branding can help establish an expectation that something is higher quality than the competition, even if the difference is minimal.
If you have never taken branding your business seriously, I hope these reasons are good enough for you to begin to consider it.