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BLOG - BRANDING

MORE THAN JUST A LOGO

Brought to you by YUMYUM, providing digital marketing in Northampton

What comes to mind first when you think of any well-known business?

Most of us will think of the values and personality that the business embodies, rather than details about the specific products or services it sells.

Apple? Innovative, premium, expensive.

Ryanair? Cheap, no-frills, not the best customer service.

Innocent? Fun, quirky, healthy.

The impression that a business gives off sums up what a brand is. It’s a business’s identity and the perceptions consumers have about it. Sometimes the definition of brand can be confused as just a logo. Sure, a logo can contribute to a brand, but it’s much more than that.

Communicating your business’s identity and values through smart branding is more important than it ever has been.

As consumers get savvier and enjoy access to more information, they expect the businesses they buy from to align with their personal values. As a business, you have to work hard to stand out and you can’t get away with pretending to be something you’re not.

Business benefits

Having a strong brand brings huge business benefits.

Humans are emotional creatures and when we make decisions we rely on a healthy dose of feelings. Making a purchasing decision based purely on facts would be impossible for us because we’d have to process and analyse such a vast quantity of information.

We consider as many facts as we can handle (such as price, length of warranty or technical specifications) and then plump for a brand that we, well, like. One that resonates with our beliefs and that we feel supports our own personal image.

If your business doesn’t have a strong brand identity, you’re missing out on an important factor in what makes people decide where they spend their money. Only a business that operates in a highly price-competitive market that is saturated with similar products (such as selling phone covers on Amazon) can get away with no brand.

Customer loyalty

A good brand can create unwavering customer loyalty. If your customers believe in what you represent strongly enough, they’ll buy from you even if there are logical arguments not to do so.

Apple is a great example of this phenomenon, where consumers are happy to pay a higher price because they value what the Apple brand represents. Technology with a similar specification can be bought for less but it’s nowhere near as popular.

A launchpad for other products

Once you have established a strong brand identity, its characteristics can be transferred to other products in other sectors. You can use your brand as a launchpad for new ventures and they’ll have traction from the word go based on what you have built elsewhere.

Richard Branson has used the strength of his Virgin brand to launch businesses as diverse as an airline and a broadband provider.

Branding for SMEs

As specialists in digital marketing in Northampton, we're in tune with the needs of small business owners. So while strong branding brings big benefits, we're adamant that it isn’t just for big business. While you might not have the budget or reach of Apple or Virgin, you can still take steps to build your brand and reap the rewards.

A good digital marketing agency can help you create your brand and communicate it to the world.

Start by defining your brand

Working out what you want your brand to be is your first step.

To do this, you need to be clear on your business objectives and marketing strategy. Who is your target market? What are your core products and how are they pitched? What are your USPs? How have your competitors branded themselves? Are there any big trends affecting your sector? What values are driving your business?

Answering these questions will help you work out who you are as a business and what your brand identity should be.

Understand your customers

Knowing your customers is crucial because ultimately the goal of your brand is to connect with them on an emotional level. What are their values and how do those values impact where they spend their money?

If you’re a solicitor, your brand identity could be dependable, calm, knowledgeable and trustworthy. If you run a party shop, on the other hand, your customers might not respond so well if you portray those characteristics. Here, you might want to come across as fun, friendly, bubbly and colourful.

Your brand needs to connect with your customers and create an emotional connection with them, whether that be allaying a fear, fulfilling a desire or another emotional connection.

Communicate your brand

Once you have defined your brand’s personality, you need to work out how to start communicating it.

Your brand identity should run through everything that your business does, from the graphics you use on your marketing materials to the tone of voice in your emails. For customers to believe it, it needs to be consistent.

If you are dependable and no-nonsense, use more formal language and go for muted, crisp graphics and colourways. If you are fun and light-hearted, you can use bolder colours, more daring graphics and use casual and colloquial language.

Producing brand guidelines that spell out details such as how to describe your business, the way your team should dress and the values they should embody is a great way to ensure everyone in your business is clear on what to do.

Your team will need to be on board with your brand identity because they will be responsible for upholding it. Explain to them why it’s important and make it easy for them by giving them whatever resources they need to ensure that they’re able to represent your business in the way you want them to. That could be anything from branded stationery and a uniform through to communication training.

At YUMYUM, we provide the complete package when it comes to digital marketing in Northampton, helping SMEs develop their brand identity and communicate it in an impactful way to customers. Nail your brand and customers are more likely to, quite literally, buy into what you’re offering.

Speak to us today about how our website design team can help you get the best bang for your buck

At YUMYUM we believe we’ve hit the sweet spot in affordable websites. We’ve created three packages with totally transparent pricing so you know exactly what you are paying for and what you are going to get. We always focus on your business goals first. Then we create a totally bespoke website design that will show off your business and help you achieve your goals.