Sreeram Sreenivasan, founder and CEO of Ubiq BI, sums up building your brand as being ‘all about occupying a sizeable amount of public mind-space and consistently driving more customers to deal with your company.’ He offered these top five tips in a recent guest post for B2B Marketing Zone.
Position yourself differently from others.
Try targeting a niche group. For example, despite similar platforms such as MailChimp being widely available, Sydney-based email campaign specialists Campaign Monitor built their own email marketing tool targeted squarely at designers and within six months had thousands sign up.
Do one or two things really well. Rather than be all things to all people within your industry, specialise instead. Sreenivasan cites inDinero founder Jessica Mah as having the great idea of creating accounting software that promised two key things: ease-of use and low costs. Turns out it was just what many small businesses needed. She now employs 100 people and turns over $10M+.
Tell a unique story. Don’t be afraid to broadcast why you started a company in the first place because it’s sure to resonate with others who share your view. James Moody openly shares the fact he started Sendle as a cheaper, better alternative to what he saw as the frustrations of dealing with Australia Post.
Be personal and real
Sreenivasan recommends personalising your brand every which way you can. Use photos of your actual team on your website, not stock images bought online. Faces on email signatures, images on blog posts, lots of people shots on social media platforms; all these help to humanise your brand.
Build your own online platform
Identify your target audience and create a blog or other form of ‘customer community’ offering high-quality content. Your brand will benefit accordingly as its amplification across other social networks means it reaches an ever-widening audience. Ask professionals to help set it up correctly.
Involve your employees
Seeking feedback from frontline employees is key to getting their buy-in and making it easier to roll-out changes later on, says Sreenivasan. Asking for staff input gives you a far better idea of how your brand is truly perceived by customers, too; often quite different to what you might have hoped for. It’s a great opportunity to uncover gaps in brand perceptions and communication.
Brand messaging must be consistent to do its job effectively. A consistent look and feel across every communication channel, all marketing literature, social media presence, business directories and premises will make a powerful collective impact, according to Sreenivasan. Even your office supplies such as letterhead, notebooks, and coffee cups should be consistently branded. That way, when you post images of your team online, you present a consistent, unified, fully-branded front to your target audience.