Business vs. Brand
Business and a brand are two different things. They may sometimes be used interchangeably but they are pretty different for entrepreneurs.
Business refers to the main purpose of a company, whereas branding is about generating value through the perceptions in people’s minds. It’s easy to see that a business is a company that sells a product. A brand is the way it presents itself, with its tone of voice, branding, and lifestyle. A brand is the business’s identity. It’s the part of the business that connects to the customers and builds lifelong connections.
Now that you know the difference between a business and a brand and why you need to be a brand, here’s how you can build a brand online to ensure longevity with your business.
Step 1: Get the basics right
This is where you’ll need to focus on getting the basics right if you want your company to grow. The basics of building a brand are:
- Your why
—why does your business exist, and what is its purpose? Why are you doing what you’re doing and how does it matter to the world around you?
- Mission statement
—What does your business promise to the customers? What is the mission of your brand? Why should people be interested in you?
- The tone of voice
—How do you communicate with your customers—are you cheerful or serious? Casual or luxurious? Your language and tone matter when it comes to brand building, so spend the time honing your voice and what words you’re going to use when talking to your audience.
- Visual branding
—There’s plenty of research that shows how colors can have a significant impact on how something is perceived. Younger generations are willing to pay more attention to the visibility and aesthetic aspects of products than older people, who usually focus more on the price. If you look at the success of makeup brand Glossier, a huge part of their success has been due to the careful packaging and branding of their products, as well as the dusty-pink color which is now known as Glossier pink.
- Digital assets
—Digital assets include your landing pages, sales pages, and most importantly, your website. You have 0.5 seconds to make an impression on a person who first stumbled upon your website. Make sure that you manage your website well enough to attract high-quality clients.
Step 2: Be consistent
Building and maintaining consistency as a business is crucial. The key to success is showing up every day and doing what you do best. For this reason, it’s important that consistency is key if your brand is a top priority. Customers appreciate consistent branding over social channels and media. And research shows brands that are consistent seem to increase their revenue by 33%.
Showing up on your customer’s feeds consistently helps the customers to get to know your brand better. This, in turn, builds trust with them. Building trust is important because most customers need to trust the brand before they buy.
There are two ways you want to make sure your brand is consistent:
- Showing up regularly for your customers and delivering on your promise
- Visual brand consistency
Step 3: Choose your marketing channels
Marketing is essential to building a brand’s identity. When you start out, you might feel compelled to be on all the different platforms but it could be more prudent to instead start small and work your way up. It’s best to focus your efforts on two platforms. This will depend on the type of content you’re producing and where your audience hangs out. If you’ve done market research, then you’ll know where to reach them.
Set up your profiles, optimize them, and create a content strategy that will help you make connections with your target audience. This way, you’ll be present and consistent.
Step 4: Establish your presence as an expert in your niche
Fifty years ago, nobody cared who was behind the wheel, who was the driving force of a business. The change to 2021 means that customers care about the person behind the business and this provides an opportunity for you to be a real expert.
This can open up new opportunities. If you’re developing your own personal brand and becoming an expert in your field, you should build a network of experts to help each other grow. You’ll also want to dip into the audiences of some of those experts in order to get your message out there.
As a side business, you can jump on podcasts of people in your niche and guest blog on other websites. Let people know that you’re available to help them anytime with some insightful advice! If you do have a website with a blog, then allow guest blogs to be posted as well. This will build connections and cross-promoting between your audiences. There are many ways you can become an expert in your niche and build relationships with others. You just have to be willing to put yourself out there.
Step 5: Create a community
Your team of brand ambassadors will be the ones who are most interested and invested in your success. When you’re planning how to grow your presence online, think about building your community around your brand.
Building a strong community around your brand will allow you to do more with your business in the future. Imagine if you were able, by creating one social media account, to eventually release new content on a variety of other platforms, while attracting new followers to the things you have and do.
Building a brand takes a little extra work, but when it comes to a business that lasts, the input yields a high reward.
Would you like to make sure you are building your brand efficiently?
One of the best ways to build your brand is by getting a Social Media Manager to manage your online platforms and keep track of your online presence.
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