Branding 101: Best Practices for New Business Owners

According to March 2020 statistics, there were 804,398 businesses less than a year old, an increase in the March 2019 figure of 770,609. This means there’s a large number of startups competing for business at any given time. On the other end of the scale, startup failure rates are about 90%, of which 21.5% fail in the first year. Reasons for failure include lack of funding, insufficient research, targeting the wrong market, inadequate marketing, and sales strategies, and lack of skills.

What can you do to safeguard your business against failure? Let’s look at a few practices you should take into account when starting your business.

Branding Explained

Scott Cook, the founder of the software company Intuit, described branding very well when he said, “A brand is no longer what we tell the customer it is — it is what customers tell each other it is.” Your brand is much more than just a name or a logo; it’s people’s perception of your product or service and the feeling it evokes when they think and talk about it. Branding is the “voice” and “face” of your company, the relationship between your services and your image. In essence, brand-building is your relationship with your customers and how you relate to them.

The Importance of Branding

Branding is the tool that translates your business’ key messages to customers. Depending on the industry, it builds awareness, drives sales, generates leads, and communicates your expertise and experience so your customers know what to expect from your company. A well-established and robust brand increases business value, generates new customers, and creates trust within the marketplace. A brand that positions itself realistically in the market will gain leverage in the industry and build a solid reputation that delivers on its promises.

Branding Agency or DIY?

Building a brand can be tricky, and it isn’t always possible for a startup to employ professional branding agency services, which can be very expensive. Branding agencies mainly offer turnkey solutions, such as logo and web design, printing services, online media marketing, email campaigns, and strategic branding and marketing development. Of these, there are several branding projects that you can do yourself, such as using a free logo maker online. Web-based design options are user-friendly and allow you to create striking logos by choosing from different styles, colors, and fonts.

Strategize Your Brand

Finally, knowing your audience is crucial for your brand’s success. To reach your business goals, research and know your customers’ needs and key demographics, such as age and location. ZenBusiness also emphasizes that you need to understand what problems they’re trying to solve when employing your services and which marketing channels they prefer.

Branding for Success 

By applying these best practices, you can build and develop a brand that will distinguish you from your competitors and set you on a path of success.

Moon Design, located in Sanatoga, PA, is a web design firm that can help put your brand on the map and in your customers’ minds.

Image via Pexels