Do You Have a Small Business Branding Strategy?

"Do You Have a Small Business Branding Strategy?"
Employing proper business branding strategies for your small business is the key to long-term success. And yes, branding is  intangible and often unquantifiable for most business owners it is the single-most important ingredient to stand out in any industry.  Branding any size business is basically what convinces people to buy or avail of your products or services. It has a lot to do with determining if a business thrives or fails.

What is a Branding Strategy?

A brand is not just a logo or a name, it represents your business identity. Therefore, it is a crucial part of the startup process for any business. Branding strategies are employed to provide the fundamental steps and recognize the valuable tools that will help create a strong business brand. In general terms, a strong brand is one that people recognize and believe to deliver good quality. Have you ever found yourself at the grocery choosing one product over the other because it is the more recognized or trusted brand?

It is therefore a branding strategy’s objective to recognize what could turn your business into a trusted brand name. How can you make people trust your brand and its reputation? What should you do to communicate the objective and mission of your company? What is the message you are trying to send out to produce loyal customers? A sound business branding strategy will aim to find answers to these questions before you can establish a brand for your company that would excel in the market.

Create Name, Logo, or Website

Coming up with a name for your business goes hand in hand with creating a logo that will identify your company. When it comes to logos, always opt for something unique. Logos will be utilized in your advertising and marketing campaigns, so it must be well-recognized.

For beginners, think of a logo that will readily hint consumers about the nature of your business – such as whether you are in the food, automotive, or telecommunications business. Hence, choose images that are associated with the nature of your business and the products they will be used to represent.

Slogan or Tagline

Once you have the logo that you want, you can think of a slogan that will reinforce the message you are trying to communicate to the consumers. As long as you keep this part brief and straightforward, then this can be an effective branding tool for your business. This tagline will serve as an additional touch to the main message you are trying to give, thus giving you an edge over your competitors and highlighting the unique experience or service that consumers will be able to avail of.

One advantage that you can get with including a tagline is that it is not permanent, unlike the logo. Therefore, if your company wishes to employ a new marketing strategy, you can readily change your tagline to highlight this new marketing ploy. A tagline then opens up several opportunities to expand your marketing campaigns, as compared to the static nature of company logos because they are the ones more difficult to establish.

Colors and Images

As with logos, colors and images can be used to establish the identity of your business. Colors depict a corresponding set of emotions as well. Therefore, you need to carefully pick out exactly what type of color you are going to use in your logo in accordance with the image and personality of your business. Try to conduct a little bit of research about the different qualities of color types so you can determine exactly what best to use for your company.

Unique Services

When communicating your company brand into the market, highlight the services that only you can offer. If you can guarantee a service that none of your competition can, then you create an edge on your customers over the same businesses. Then, you can use that as a chief marketing strategy to draw more people into your business. An example of this would be a time guarantee on your delivery services, if you’re in the food business.

Learning how to effectively employ these business branding strategies will help boost your company’s campaign and be that much closer to your desired business success.

Offline Marketing Resources: Key To A Successful Offline Business Promotion

"Offline Marketing Resources: Key To A Successful Offline Business Promotion"
Contrary to what online marketers say, offline marketing is a very powerful marketing style that is still employed today even by the biggest companies. After all, this type of marketing is the foundation of small business promotion as it predates online marketing strategies. Besides, it wouldn’t have stayed this long if it isn’t effective, right? To get the most out of offline marketing and the different methods used in this type of marketing, you have to be well familiar with this and you have to learn the different offline marketing strategies and tips. You need the right offline marketing resources.

What are some of the resources that you can turn to for all your needed knowledge and skills in offline marketing? Take a look at the following:

Marketing Books

Sure, most of the books that you will find in the marketing section of bookstores today will most probably deal with online marketing. However, you can still find books whose discussion is focused on offline marketing. There are books that focus on marketing an offline business using offline methods, and even books that discuss ways to market online businesses using offline techniques.

Seminars and Workshops

Of course, if you want knowledge straight from the horses’ mouth, so to speak, attend events that discuss offline marketing strategies, methods, pointers, and tips. The speakers will surely be people who are experts in the field, those with first-hand experience who can tell you how difficult or how easy the process is. The good thing with workshops is that there are real persons, real speakers, who can clear all your confusions, answer all your questions, and address all your concerns. You won’t have to find your own way because there’ll be people who will help you, people who specialize in the subject.

Talk to Other Offline Marketers

To get a wider perspective on offline marketing, you should not stick to attending seminars—you should also get the advice of those who are into offline marketing themselves. There may be things that are not known to experts in the field but are used by small and big offline marketers, tailored to their specific needs. And who knows, these personal techniques may apply to you business as well.

Online Sites

Although offline marketing is the exact opposite of marketing online, you’ll be surprised to find that there are still offline marketing resources found in online sites. You can browse these sites to find ways and information regarding the subject. You can also join online forums that discuss similar topics.

Ebooks and Downloadable Files 

Other than directly visiting online sites, you can find ebooks and downloadable files that can guide you in your offline marketing ventures. The good thing about these ebooks and files, aside from being written by offline marketing experts, is that many of them are free. All you need is download them and save them in your desktop, to be your reference anytime you need a guide.

Offline marketing could be challenging for your small business, what with the emerging popularity of cyber technology. But with all the various offline marketing resources available, you should have no problem learning all that you need to know in order to succeed in your venture.

 

The Different Offline Marketing Strategies

"The Different Offline Marketing Strategies"
With so much online promotion and marketing going on today, business owners often ignore or discount the value of promoting your business offline.  Maybe you think promoting your business or website online is not giving you your much desired traffic and visitors. fF that’s the case, it may be time to start thinking about doing your marketing offline. Unknown to most online marketers, offline marketing is a very strong means of business or website promotion. There are different offline marketing methods you can choose from, and all these provide various benefits.

Print Marketing

As the name implies, marketing by print pertains to posting advertisements via a physical format using paper, canvas, fabric and more. Here are some ideas for print marketing:

• Newspapers and magazines. This is an expensive print marketing option because you will have to pay for ad space. Depending on the popularity and circulation coverage of the paper, you might pay higher if you’re advertising with a big company. But, the benefit is that you’ll get possible customers in an instant—those who read the paper will know about your business at once.

• Flyers and leaflets. This is a less expensive print marketing option because you won’t have to pay for ad space. All you’ll need are paper, printer, ink, and people who will do the posting or handing out of the flyers and leaflets. Its benefit is that it would be up to you how many people you reach.

• Press release. This is another print marketing method that is not as expensive but almost as powerful as marketing via newspapers and magazines. And while you’ll be promoting your business, you’ll also be giving the press people a topic to write about. And, you won’t have to pay much with this method.

Live Commercial Marketing

Unlike all other offline marketing methods, this type of marketing makes use of live broadcast in television and radio. Similar to newspapers and magazines, you also pay television and radio stations for airing space, or airing time, for your commercials. This is also an expensive option but with tremendous benefits, considering that almost all households today have televisions and radios. Besides, watching television and listening to the radio are activities common to both young and old, and to men and women alike. So, your audience and potential customers will come from various generations and from all walks of life.

Giving Away Freebies

Everybody loves freebies, and you can use this to market your site. Give out stuffs that contain your site URL, from bumper stickers to caps and similar items. Like giving out flyers and leaflets, the benefit with giving away freebies is that you can decide just how many people you can reach.

Sponsoring Or Participating In Events

It could be a seminar or a workshop in your field, or even an event like a charity. You can be the host or you can also be a guest. By showing yourself to people, your target customers, it’s easy to establish trust among them and it’s easier to convince them to go for your product or service. You’ll also be given the chance to explain to them what your business is all about—answer their questions, hear their comments personally, and see their reaction, something that is not possible with online marketing.

All these offline marketing strategies are available for you to choose from. When employed properly, they are powerful methods to promoting your site and business.

When it comes to Marketing Your Small Business Offline – Its the Basics that Count

"When it comes to Marketing Your Small Business Offline - Its the Basics that Count "
Here’s an Overview And Techniques used in Offline Marketing that hasn’t Changed much in the past two Decades or so…

In this day and age of cyber technology, everything is done in the internet—from simple activities like shopping to major ones like conducting business. The internet has become one of the most advanced and most beneficial tools used by entrepreneurs to promote their businesses—putting up websites, advertising in online pages, and many other techniques. However, behind all these advancements in technology, there’s one business promotion method that remains effective—offline marketing. This is the foundation of business promotion, the mother of online marketing. And despite the latter’s rise, the popularity of the former remains.

Small Business Offline Marketing Basics

What is this type of marketing and how does it differ from the ever-popular online marketing? Well, marketing your business offline is done using traditional methods like the following:

• Business promotion in radios and televisions. You can have a commercial about your business created and advertised using these media. To do this, you may have to spend a lot of money, depending on the company or station you are advertising with. Another cheaper alternative is by appearing as guests in television and radio shows. If you are an expert in your field and there’s a particular station that is discussing an issue in your field, you can serve as a guest and speaker. After the event, you can plug your business.

• Advertising in newspapers and magazines. Similar to television and radio business promotion, advertising in newspapers and magazines can be done in two ways. The first is to pay for a certain amount of space in the paper where you can insert an ad promoting your business, and the second is to contribute a write-up and then promote your business at the end of the write-up. The second is cheaper and may not even cost you money.

• Giving out business cards. You can start doing this among friends, and then slowly expand to improve the exposure of your business.

• Posting of flyers, leaflets, and posters. These should contain information about your business—an overview of the service or product you’re offering, rates, business address, and contact number.

• Sending printed newsletter to people through snail mail. Once you have already built a network of customers offline, you can strengthen your business relationship with them by sending out newsletters to keep them updated of your business, as well as possible new products and services.

• Giving out items with your business name, address, logo, and other important information. These giveaways can include simple things like stickers with your company logo to stuff like key chains, pens, and shirts.

All these offline marketing techniques may be your typical “evergreen” marketing tactics, but they still work. Contrary to the methods used in online marketing, which is basically marketing using the internet, for those who don’t adapt well to change, these are pretty much the same processes used for the past 20 or so years to market small businesses. Practically any marketing method that is not done in the internet can be considered offline marketing. This is marketing the old fashioned way, and many businessmen still employ this type of marketing until this day. If you want increased business exposure, it will be helpful if you use the two types of marketing side by side each other.

8 Uncommon Offline Marketing Ideas

"8 Uncommon Offline Marketing Ideas"
Whenever you think of offline marketing, the usual things that come into your mind are newspaper ads, flyers, yellow pages, posters, TV ads, word-of-mouth, etcetera, etcetera. But if you have done all of these and still fall short of your expectations, perhaps some improvisation is in need. So now we’re going to provide supplementary ideas on how you can take your offline marketing to the next level. The best thing about this? You can even come up with your own ideas after you’ve read this article. A montage of ideas can open up associations in your mind and spark even more ideas. But for now, we can start with the following:

  1. DO SOME CHARITY WORK

When people or organizations help out, people notice. What you can do is sponsor a charity event, and since the news media are always on the lookout for them, you are bound to earn recognition for your company as a result.

    2. RAISE SOME CONTROVERSY

You know what they say – bad publicity is still publicity. But we’re not going to go that low. Just incite something that will turn heads, or something bizarre that can leave an impression to potential customers.

    3. BE SNEAKY

Visit local libraries and bookstores and pretend you’re just browsing around. Go to the book section that’s related to your niche. If you have a real estate business, you can slip in a business card or a book mark bearing your URL and byline in the pages of real estate books, or other books related to the field.

   4. PUT STICKERS IN RESTROOMS

Okay, this might sound a bit silly, but I promise you that it always works. People will always pay heed to the call of nature, making the bathroom a frequently visited place. This is your opportunity. Put stickers inside the bathroom stalls, or the wall supporting the urinals. A man doing his thing has no choice but to stare at a sticker posted on the wall right in front of him.

   5. DO SOME TELEMARKETING

You’ll probably screamed at or hung up on countless times, but what’s the harm in doing some hardcore telemarketing? Pick up your telephone directory, get some leads, and start dialing away. Don’t forget to roll out your best spiel, of course.

   6. SPONSOR A LOCAL TEAM

Sponsor a local sports team, preferably one for kids if you don’t have enough financial resources. You can have your brand printed on their team uniforms. Since a real active kid can be real proud of his team uniform, he’ll probably show it around and brag about it.

   7. USE INCENTIVES

You can offer customers a discount on their next purchase in exchange for referrals. Customers refer a product to their colleagues and friends without meaning to if they are satisfied by a product. It’s a form of “bribing”.

   8. BE THE ADVERTISEMENT

Create T-shirts or caps that have your brand name and slogan on them, or maybe you can stick a large sticker bearing your ad on your car. Hey, if you’re going to do a lot of moving around haggling people to purchase your products and services, you might as well use yourself as your own advertisement!