Does your brand do a good job of communicating who you are and what you offer? Do you use it consistently and clearly across all media? Does it resonate with your most profitable markets? If not, it may be time to give your brand some TLC.
Every organization benefits from a distinctive brand that sets it apart and jumpstarts sales. It doesn't have to be an expensive or elaborate process — just a thoughtful one.
The founders of Looped LOGIC Lab Furniture had a great idea. But like a lot of startups, they also had a limited marketing budget. And where others in that situation might have put branding on the back burner, we made it front and center.
We worked with Looped LOGIC from Day 1 to develop a memorable brand that has all the audacity of their idea. It's also aimed squarely at their target markets, and designed to be extensible as they grow. As keepers of the brand, we continue to ensure that messaging stays consistent, memorable, and fun across all media.
Looped LOGIC doubled its sales in each of its first three years, and today is one of the most recognizable brands in its industry. And we get to smile every time a prospect tells our client, "I know Looped LOGIC. You're the green and orange guys with the fast shipping"
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Mercedes-Benz. Target. FedEx. What pops into your head when you hear these words, or see their logos? You don't have to think about who they are or what they do. If you want to buy a luxury car, a few household items, or overnight shipping, you don't have to do a lot of research about these companies before making a buying decision. That's the power of a brand.
Good brand recognition comes with built-in trust. A positive image. A whole bunch of objections that you've already overcome.
If making a sale is like climbing a ladder, then good branding is like starting from ten rungs up.
Absolutely not. In fact, the opposite is true. An effective brand strategy can help a small brand rocket ahead of a larger competitor. It's very effective in leveling the playing field for newcomer or a smaller brand.
It's a common misconception that branding and direct have to be separate efforts. In fact they're both more effective when you use them together. The smart move is to make sure that all your marketing and advertising promotes your brand at the same time. Just make it part of your strategic plan.
B-to-b organizations need branding just as much as consumer organizations. That's especially true if you rely on a multi-touch sales process. Customers are much more likely to let you in the door if they know who you are. In that sense, a well-managed brand can help shorten the sales process, reduce the cost of each sale, and improve your cash flow. See Lead Generation for more details.
Viral marketing—promoting your brand through word of mouth, whether through traditional means or social media—is the 21st-century version of PR. And just like PR, there's a cost to it. You have to plan and finance real or virtual events, promote your story, and follow up to measure results.
In fact, all marketing tools and efforts require some combination of time, money, skills, and resources. Viral marketing may be a perfect tool as part of your particular marketing mix. But it's not free.