Think brands or branding and you can be tempted to categorise this as a big business issue…
Every business relies on being seen, attracting attention, a solid reputation and delivering something their customers’ want, come back for or talk about with others. Every business needs to think about and execute a good brand plan, large or small, local or global.
Forget the jargon
Perhaps branding suffers from ‘daft marketing jargon syndrome’. It certainly sounds fancy, and more akin to big business. Forget the jargon if you like, this is about insightful business planning more than anything. People buy into a business and people they like. They buy into brands and take comfort in purchasing something that has a collectively held positive view. Be it a business service, shop or retail product.
Brands provide safety. Customers keep coming back for more if it fits their needs and outlook. Brands provide safety when making choices, and we choose between smaller business brands every day
Those customers will recommend your business, or even make you an automatic choice if you keep delivering what they bought into. Regardless of size, all the things mentioned in the previous post about ‘what a brand is’ stay true.
Smaller business examples
Let’s think about smaller businesses that aren’t known household brands for a minute. We all need to stand out. The best ones stand for something, and use the power of brand to achieve that stand out and get a collectively held positive view:
- The farm shop that realises breeding/growing what they sell right there makes people confident in what they’re buying, it’s posh, aspirational and trendy. So the shop environment, packaging, logo, sausage and cheese selection and expert butcher to match all fit that exclusivity. You’re buying ‘exclusive quality’.
- The small double-glazing business that emphasise traditional methods, craftsmen and an obsession with quality. They reject the idea of sub-contractors that fit the final product. You’re buying ‘quality craftsmanship’ throughout the process.
- The architects that instil such a level of quality checking and precision that their house-building customers give them work to check from other architects. You’re buying ‘a safe pair of hands’.
- The mobile coffee guy that specialises in home-made croissants of every variety and ice-cream and coffee worth stepping out of the office for. You’re buying ‘convenience and quality’.
Big/Small: You have a brand
A brand story, plan or reputation has to be earned and any business, whatever the size has to work at their brand constantly. Every business has competition. Every business needs to stand out. So if you have a business, you have a brand! John Hayward runs his own consultancy, Hayward Brands, providing brand and marketing consultancy for businesses in the UK. Never complicated, just cleverly done.