Why Branding Your Business is the Key to Long Term Success.
In the clutter of online ads, social media and business content, one single factor gives you 4 times the visibility of your competitors. That factor is branding. The benefits of branding for the future are well-documented and seemingly endless. Branding drives costs down throughout the organization while increasing revenues.
Branding supports all of your marketing and advertising efforts, helping you work more efficiently. Get the most for your investments into the company.
What other benefits of branding do you need to know about?
Differentiate in a Copycat Marketplace
In some industries, it’s not easy to stand out. You may have many competitors doing more or less the same thing. You’re caught in a position where you’re simply sharing a huge customer base with a lot of different businesses.
Many businesses are faced with this. They often like to think that customer service standards set them apart. But the fact is that every business is trying work this angle. They know how important customer experience is to people.
One of the major benefits of branding is how it helps you step out of the cookie-cutter mold that most of the similar businesses remain stuck in. People know you not just for what you do or sell. They recognize you as a brand.
You now influence how they see that brand. It gives your nearly identical products or services a huge boost just because they are provided by a name that people have learned to appreciate and trust.
2. Gain a Foothold in a Competitive Marketplace
Are you a new player in an industry where major competitors have already gobbled up market share? Have they already built strongholds of loyal customers? It might seem impossible to compete with these giants. But branding is how it’s done. Establish your business as the better alternative to these big names. Find and build your brand around a niche audience to which your business will be seen as superior in some way.
Your business can become the eco-friendly option. You can be seen a more personalized in your approach.
Consider who your most likely customers are. Start building a brand that very specifically speaks to their unique values, interests, challenges and goals. Carve out your edge in a competitive market. Then grow from there.
3. Earn Trust
Have you ever been on a random website ready to buy something? You have your cart filled and that credit card in hand. Then you start to second guess yourself. How do you know if this is a legitimate business? Anyone can create a website and say almost anything they want. You head over the Amazon to buy it instead. An unscrupulous seller can just as easily be on Amazon. But it feels safer because a brand has been built around it.
Think about this in brick-and-mortar terms. If you need your car repaired, do you go to the dealership? Or do you go to an independent garage you’ve never heard of? Unless you received a great recommendation, you’ll likely go with the one you know. Whether you’re an online business or brick and mortar, all consumers will have some “trust issues” with businesses they don’t know. Because of it, they either don’t buy. Or they buy in small quantities to test the waters. Both of these cost you as a business. Earn the trust that makes people confident in their purchases by building a brand.
4. Speed Up the Buyer’s Journey
The benefits of branding extend through the sales cycle. The buyer’s journey at it’s most basic includes:
Awareness / Discovery
Decision / Making a PurchasePurchasing Again
Branding complements each stage to both speed the journey up and make that journey more valuable to you.
Awareness / Discovery
Branding makes it easier for potential customers to find you. They see you on social media. You have lots of reviews from customers. When they do a search in Google, your website appears either through ongoing SEO or search engine optimizing. Both are important to branding and benefit from it.
Because they recognize and trust your brand, they’re more likely to notice your ads and click on them. If they see that your brand shared something on social media, they’re more likely to check it out because of the brand behind it. This makes it easier and faster to consider their options and choose you. They may not even need to look at other brands.
Branding is that powerful.
Decision/Make a Purchase
There may be little to no hesitation to make that purchase. They know you. They trust you. They have built positive emotions around your brand. They don’t wait to buy.
65% of people say that they have strong emotions around the brands they buy. 90% of these emotions are positive. Everything from electronics to fashion to food elicit emotional responses.
5. Become Magnetic
How much time and money do you spend trying to get new business? In the early stages, you spend more time doing outreach than you do business. One of the benefits of branding is that the larger it gets, the more magnetic it becomes. Be found organically because people are drawn to your brand. They hear about you from their friends. They keep seeing you where they are. Isn’t this how you want to get new business?
Nearly 80% of people say that “name recognition” is the #1 reason they click on a search result in a search engine like Google. You could be doing everything right to optimize your site for search engines through search engine optimization (SEO). But if they don’t recognize your brand thanks to strong branding, they’re not likely to click your website.
Attract Customers Who Will Most Appreciate You
Now, we get to the really good stuff. Have you ever been infuriated with a bad review?
It was obvious from the comments that the person had certain expectations that don’t align with what you actually do. Or your products or services just weren’t a “good fit” while someone else would have appreciated them. This happens when a business doesn’t have a clear brand. One of the benefits of branding is that it’s clearer to would-be customers whether you’re a good fit for them before they buy. There’s less chance that people who won’t be happy with your business will choose you over a competitor.
While this may feel like “losing customers”, know that it never actually plays out like that. For every 1 customer who you won’t attract, you’ll attract 10 more easily because it’s clear what your brand is. Building a social media presence is a great way to share with potential customers who you are to attract the target customer. Build content around your target audience to showcase who you are as a brand.
Generate Unpaid Media Buzz
Businesses without brands rarely get unsolicited positive media attention. When reporters know your brand, they’re more likely to mention you. They might ask for an interview. They value your opinion related to an industry trend.
That’s all free advertising.
Increase Advertising Response Rates
People go with the name they know. They are more likely to see a name they know. But branding is much more than a name. They may recognize a font, a visual style and communication style, colours or something else. When they see it, it’s familiar.
Consistent branding helps your business become a brand that people recognize when they see it. Because they recognize it, they’re more likely to click on ads and make purchases.
Check out this data collected by WordStream. Branding can increase click through rate (CTR) on your online ads by 2-3X.
Building a brand has tremendous benefits throughout the organization. But perhaps the leader among the benefits of branding is how a brand sets you up for long-term success. It’s hard to knock a brand off its “pedestal” once it has achieved a level of branding in a niche or with a broader customer base.
Branding is an investment in the future. That includes both the near future and the more distant future if you’re planning to pass a business down to your children.
Want to see how your brand impacts your long term business success? Connect with Alyssa at firstname.lastname@example.org