Wednesday, November 27, 2013

5 Important steps is becoming a big brand for big financial success

Big brand for big success
There is a clear correlation between successful businesses and strong branding, but you don’t need to be a big business in order to become a big brand; in fact many large corporate brands are finding that it pays to drop the corporate image in order to increase their appeal as an independent company. Today increasing numbers of new and small and business owners are recognising the benefits of developing a big brand identity which allows them to punch above their weight and compete head to head with large established businesses.

Here we will look at 5 important steps that any business owner can take in order to become a big brand, but before we do so it is important to say what a brand is and what it is not. A brand is not a product, it is not a name, it is not a logo, and it is not a website. It might involve all of those elements in as much as they contribute to its development, but a brand is far less tangible than any of them. A brand is an image, an impression, a vision; it is what people feel about you, your business, and your product. It is something that they create in their own minds; it is an emotional bond; it is something that they trust; that they believe in; that they are loyal to; and for which they are willing to pay over the market rate.

So how do you go about building a big brand? Here are key steps.

Step 1 – Brand definition

If you are going to build a big brand then it is important to be clear about what you are aiming to build. Spend some time revisiting your product, service or business and it place in the market. What differentiates you from the rest of the crowd, what is the relationship with your customer base, what do your customers feel about you now, and what do you want them to feel in the future?  Every successful brand has a narrative; it tells a story, it has a past, a present and a future.

Step 2 – Brand emulation

At some time in their lives, just about everyone has had heroes, role models, and mentors. Consider what brands you admire, not just those with which you compete, but ones which stir and inspire you. What is special about them, why have they worked when others have failed, in what way do they stand out from the crowd? You should learn what you can from them and adapt what you learn to your brand model; even Sir Isaac Newton stood on the shoulders of giants, so too should you, but avoid copying.

Step 3 – It’s all about your customers, so respect them

You should treat your customers with respect. When you are building your brand avoid making any false claims, raising your customers’ hopes and aspirations only to ultimately disappoint them. It is a delicate business and your customers are highly intelligent so don’t try to pull the wool over their eyes. If you do then you will be found out and you won’t be forgiven. Be genuine, be honest and be consistent so that you customers know what to expect.

Step 4 – Design

At the beginning we said that a brand wasn’t a logo, a name, a product, or a website, but these are all necessary elements. The design, the word and the image are fundamental in fixing your brand in the eyes of the beholder, so don’t scrimp on getting this right. As a business owner you are unlikely to be the best person to interpret your dream and aspirations for your brand into an optimal brand design, so get some help from the professionals.

Step 5 – Brand consistency

Building a big brand takes time, patience and investment. It isn’t something that you should change on a whim; changing a brand can be and often has been disastrous. If you do need to make changes then make them slowly and subtly; a consistent brand carries far more weight and it is more far reaching. This doesn’t need that you can’t be flexible; remember that a brand is about the image that your customers have in their minds, so give them some space in which to develop it.

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