Powerful Digital Branding Strategies For SME’s
Branding has both internal and external benefits for your business.
Externally it creates recognition, trust and loyalty from customers. It also builds “top of mind” awareness in prospects who have yet to become paying customers.
Internally it creates a sense of belonging to a unique and identifiable organization in the employees and other stakeholders.
These are often referred to as qualitative benefits and in accounting terms they are also known as “Goodwill.” These are difficult to quantify and measure but nevertheless any business owner with them will testify as to their very real value to the business. A brand is an intangible asset in the balance sheet.
Branding is therefore more than just a smart Logo and Business or Product Name. It involves engagement with the emotions and thoughts of all those with whom the business comes into contact.
A business’s branding is more important than you might think. On the outside, your brand may seem like it consists only of elements such as logos and colors, but your brand is actually the entire identity of your business. Your brand gives you personality.
Branding has always been a vital part of business, but it may be more important now than ever before. With social media, consumers get exposed to new brands every day. This can be great for consumers who have plenty of options and are able to do research to find the best one, but it makes it harder for businesses. Source
In this post we explore 5 key aspects about Branding:
1 How Are Brands Created ?
There are two main ways in which brands are created
a) Branding by “Personal Experience”
This creates the strongest bond between customers, businesses, products and services. In this mode of brand building your business is leveraging the contact points between itself and the stakeholders such as customers and prospects.
Leveraging touch or contact points means you are giving value and satisfaction to the user of that touch point when they engage with your business.
For instance, your customer service must be of high quality in order to create exceptional “Personal Experience” with people who call for information, advice and guidance. Such proactive and beneficial customer services start a virtuous cycle of interaction and engagements between the prospect and your business.
Positive and exceptional “Personal Experiences” lead to acclaim spread by word of mouth, referrals and recommendations. In turn such recommendations feed into a still stronger Brand, starting the cycle all over again. This is the number one best way of marketing your brand.
However, always remember it is easier to create a negative Brand than it is to create a positive one, by offering low or poor quality and value products, services and customer support. The quality of engagement at the touch or contact points must therefore be of high quality.
The second way of building a brand is by :
b) Branding by “Indirect Experience”
The “Indirect Experience” strategy relies on creating a consistent, repeating association to the product in your prospects mind. This is the so called “Top of Mind” strategy which is the main aim of tactics such as display advertising in Online Display Networks.
At Digital Marketers Nairobi, use a variety of tactics to achieve this aim for clients and businesses. These include
- Display advertising with maximization of conversions, impressions and clicks as the aim of the campaigns
- Using Slogans and memorable logos in the entire digital ecosystem from website through to adverts and social media platforms
- Lead generation via give aways on websites to collect e Mail addresses that can later be used for e Mail marketing.
- Re-purposing of content so as to maximize accessibility of information from the business in the form of text, audio and video.
We use these and many other tactics to generate a “top of mind” presences in prospects and customers to facilitate ease of remembering your business brand when they are purchasing your product and service offers.
2) Brand Building On The Internet – The Problem
Let us now look at issues that may arise during the ongoing branding of a business especially in an online digital framework.
The Internet has re-defined Branding models of the past because it has leveled the playing field, for both consumers and businesses. Prospects and customers are more involved with businesses and products than they were in the past. Research of products and services, before purchase is easier.
Consumers have so much choice now they are no longer easily “taught” loyalty to a particular Brand. Consumers are less willing to form bonds or create “loyal” associations with products and businesses.
On the other side of the coin, businesses have much more competition and must be more customer focused than ever before. Companies that thrive and stay in business recognize building lasting relationships with existing customers is more profitable, than always trying to find new customers.
The main issue is therefore in a world of stronger more informed consumers, brand building is more difficult because they can and do by-pass your direct and indirect experiences with a click of the mouse.
To overcome this problem requires strategic thought and tactical awareness of how to manage your brand’s presence in the digital ecosystem.
At Digital Marketers Nairobi we are competent in implementing and managing such strategies and tactics. Visit https://digitalmarketers.co.ke to view our services in marketing and commerce related disciplines for branding purposes
3) The Cost And Value Of A Brand.
Brand building has a cost in time, money and effort. The cost of Brand building is easily quantified in money terms because each dollar spent on the strategic and tactical initiatives can be accounted for.
However, as we saw earlier the value of a Brand is harder to establish because it involves measuring emotional and intellectual associations that might not necessarily translate into cash sales.
By not understanding the value but clearly understanding the cost of Branding, some marketers decide to get round this problem by competing in the branding exercise solely on price. This is a frequent mistake we see at Digital Marketers where businesses do not understand features such as “Quality Score” in their marketing campaigns. They do not understand how and why high quality scores are perhaps even more important in branding that the budgets and bids they use in their marketing campaigns.
This is a serious flaw in marketers and for businesses because whilst money budgets are important, branding online is now much more about relevance especially when the tactics include as they often do advertising on display and search networks.
4) Brands Are Not Eternal
Brand building is an ongoing and never ending Business strategy.
The emotional and intellectual associations and recognition that together make up Brand loyalty wear off, if not re-energized frequently. Brands are subject to fashion, fads and change. You must understand recognition is not the same as popularity. For instance your market may recognize your Brand, but that may not translate into sales if the association is unfashionable.
The temptation in such circumstances, is to spend less on Branding strategies, cut product or service prices or drop the business line altogether.
These are knee jerk reactions to uncontrollable events when reviewed in the short term. A measured initial response is to re-invent the Brand, freshen it up and market it to a new generation of consumers.
Many businesses re-invent, and re-brand themselves and go on to achieve new consumer acclaim.
5) Strategies For Brand Building
Here are a few short to medium term tactical measures you can start using today to kick start your Brand building program.
- Get a professional web site with customized headers, footers and logos. Ensure it is fast loading – Make your “user experiences” a.k.a UX happy ones.
- Advertise regularly using paid channels online such as the Google Display Network which has the capacity to reach in excess of 90% of the internet users.
- Create a complete and comprehensive digital marketing strategy for the full ecosystem including social media.
- Create content and re-purpose it. You can do this by writing useful, informative, educational or advisory articles and publish them regularly both on your website, social media and in guest platforms. Take the materials you write and create audio and video output to make them more accessible in different formats to a wider audience.
- Use a good autoresponder service and communicate frequently with your customers and prospects via e Mail giving useful, and personal information after conversions on your website
- Visit https://digitalmarketers.co.ke to see how we can assist your branding requirement using innovative and powerful digital strategies and tactics.
Branding your business and products is a key part of your success strategy. You want people to associate your business name and products with high quality, and high value.
Successful Brands make money. Ensure your branding and profits by talking to Digital marketers Nairobi.
Digital Marketers in Nairobi https://digitalmarketers.co.ke is a one stop shop for best of class full digital marketing consultancy services in Kenya.
Our sister business Nairobi Business Courses offers training in digital marketing visit them at Nairobi Business Courses