7 Essential Steps to take in other to Build Brand Power
These 7 strategies can help you establish your business as a brand that reflects the merchandise you sell, the service you provide, the uniqueness you offer, and the kind of customer you want to attract.
Step 1: Find a niche and becoming an expert
In this age of specialization, consumers are more than willing to pay extra money to deal with a specialised professional — someone who really knows his or her business, a real expert. In fact, the more you specialise, the better you get at what you do (and the more customers will travel farther or pay extra to do business with you).
Establish your business as the expert in a particular retail niche, and customers will come. To do this effectively, you'll need study to become an expert, obtain relevant credentials to establish your reputation, spread the word about what you can offer, and share your knowledge. Remember that the first business to discover a niche usually becomes very wealthy. Find a niche, and you’ll get rich.
Step 2: Understand who your customers are
When considering what kind of customers you want to attract to your business — your ideal customers — think about their income level, their education level, their lifestyle, and the media they are exposed to (especially the magazines they read). All this information helps you determine how best to build your brand to appeal to your ideal customer.
If you really want to know your customers, find out what they’re reading! The variety of magazines and books on people’s shelves reflects their various wants and needs. This makes them good indicators of what the people who buy them are really like.
Step 3: Create a recognisable Logo
A truly great logo is one that is both a powerful image and a specific repre- sentation of your business — not just a pretty picture. It can be simply your name presented in a distinctive font, a symbol that represents your business, or a combination of these. Some examples of effective logos include; Dangote's Name, Apple's Bitten Apple, Chicken republic's Chicken, and Drum Sticks Chicken thighs. These are effective logos because the public immediately recognizes them as representing their respective businesses.
When you’re designing your logo, remember to keep it simple (so that it’s easy to recognize) and be sure that it reflects your business. Understand that different fonts elicit different emotions — some fonts are very formal while others are more casual. A good graphic designer knows the difference. But before you turn this project over to a graphic designer, you must do some homework.
First, determine the look and feel that you want to create. Think of the types of people you have defined as your ideal customers. What would appeal to them? What stores do they already shop at? Collect logos that appeal to you. Next, present your ideas to your graphic designer and let her create a sample logo for you. Finally, show the proofs of this new logo to friends, colleagues, enemies, family members, professionals, retailers, or anyone else you can think of, and gather their opinions.
Step 4: Own a word or phrase
You can really make your brand stick in the minds of your customers if you can find a word or phrase that specifically represents your business yet has a broad and catchy appeal. “All you need to sell anywhere” for instance is the expression that I used very successfully in my Business.
Be careful not to crown yourself a specialist of a manufacturer’s brand or item. You could be building brand equity in an item that will eventually die out. You may have a nice run, but you’ll have to look for a new specialty sooner or later. Go for longevity — invest in yourself!
Also never brand yourself as “The cheapest in town.” If you create a brand based on price alone, you will make your customers loyal to price. Your brand becomes an easy prey for any store that’s cheaper.
Step 5: Create trade dressing
Trade dressing simply refers to the colors that you use to represent your business. If I asked you, “What colors are used by Coca-Cola?” you would know — red and white. What are Pepsi’s colors? Red, white, and blue. Kodak? Yellow and black.
Pick your colors and use them on everything that you possibly can — on all your packaging, on your signage (inside and out), and in your ads. You can try to include your trade dressing in the interior of your store, but the colors that make great packaging and signage rarely make for good interior design. Yellow and black are great colors for bags but terrible for a store interior.
Step 6: Provide consistency
Your logo, your fonts, your signature line, and your colors must be the same every single time you use them. You may make some substitutions (such as using the name “Coke” rather than “Coca-Cola”), but don’t change your logo or typeface. If you vary the elements of your store’s presentation such as your logo or color scheme, you undermine the power of your brand.
Make sure that your brand looks the same every time. Consistency builds brand power more than anything else. Consistency builds brand power more than anything else. Consistency builds brand power more than anything else. Consistency builds brand power more than anything else. Got it?
Step 7: Protect your brand
Anything you do in your business must be good for the brand that you are building. If you say that your salespeople are professionals yet you fail to train your staff, you hurt your brand. If you say that you’re efficient yet your store is messy, you hurt your brand. If you say that you care about giving back to the community yet you’re caught littering, you hurt your brand.
Everything you do (or that your staff does) affects your brand. Even posting a simple handwritten paper sign in your store affects your brand. If all your signs are handwritten on paper, no problem. But if making a handwritten paper sign was just a shortcut, you hurt your brand.