2. Five Steps to Building A Brand for Non-Marketers
If you're running a small company and are intimidated about brand creation, here's your simple solution
We are in interesting times right now. After 14 months of global pandemic and economic shutdown, some industries are booming (e.g. athletic footwear, webinar technology, etc) while others have been decimated (e.g. live events, cruises, restaurants).
Of those industries that have been decimated, the fortunate ones have received enough PPP, have low overhead and maintained a rainy day fund that is substantial enough to keep their business from, well, going out of business.
Truth be told, that leaves lots of business owners with a bunch of time on their hands. What better way to use that time than to put together some growth plans. All those things you were too busy or intimidated to do, now is the time to get them done.
I know there are a lot of business owners out there who don’t have much of a marketing background. So for you, the mom & pop shops, the technology start-ups, the random retailers, here’s a down and dirty way to build your brand.
Matlow’s 5 Steps for Building A Brand (for Non-Marketers)
Step 1: Make A List
What are all the things that you, as a company, do really well? List all of them. Everything you can think of that you do well should be on the list. Are you the best at customer support? Do you have the most flexible hours? Lowest price? Prettiest shade of blue in your logo?
Whatever it is, put that list together.
OK, once you have that list, create a separate list of what you don't do well.
Step 2: Choose Two
Look back at that list you made of all the things you do well. Pick one (or maybe two) of the items from your list. Make it no more than two!
It’s tough, I know. It’s easy to think we’re great at everything. We’re not. So if you can’t narrow it down to just two items that you do better than everything else, then simply pick the one or two items that you WANT to do better than others.
Step 3: Ask Around
Ask your significant other. Survey your past and present customers. Find out what they all think you do the best - but don’t give them any hints! Also find out what they think you do the worst.
Once they given you those items, take the one or two things that YOU selected in Step 2 above, and ask these other folks how they think you compare to the competition in those arenas. Ask them what would make them buy from you again. Ask them what would make them go to the competition.
Step 4: Validate Your Findings
Compare your survey results to the list you made. Are the things customers said you do best the same ones that you selected? If they are, wonderful, you’re on the right track.
More importantly, are those items the reason why people keep buying from you? If not, what *will* make your customers buy from you again?
Step 5: Own It
Once you are clear you know what you do the best and know that it's something that will keep customers coming back, then it’s time for you to own it. Work your butt off to make sure you are the best in the world at it. Promote that trait in all you do - advertising, press releases, images, social media, everywhere. Do not ever mention your company name without also talking about the thing you do best.
Yeah, well, it does take a little bit of work. But if building a continually successful business were so easy, everybody would have one.