Why Small Business Branding Matters
Why Branding Matters
For Small Businesses
Why does small business branding matter? Picture this: it’s a hot summer day and you’ve got a craving for a cold soda. You head into the nearest convenience store and stand facing a wall of soda options. Every color bottle imaginable is in front of you, with flashy fonts and designs and flavors. What do you do? You reach for the first bottle you recognize (probably Coke or Pepsi, maybe Sprite, Sunkist or Barq’s Root Beer if you’re into that sort of thing).
Why do you reach for it? It’s not because the bottle somehow won you over with a flashy marketing subtitle or with claims of less sugar, more energy or better taste. You reach for it because you immediately recognize the bottle - its colors, its design, its logo and its name. You reach for it because it’s familiar and because you trust it.
So what the heck does soda have to do with small business marketing? Surprisingly, a lot. What this little anecdote demonstrates is the power of branding. And while your small business may not ever read Coke or Pepsi status, it can certainly benefit from a cohesive brand that makes your company easily recognizable and stand out among the competition.
Small Business Branding Basics
As a small business owner, you are truly trying to do it all. You’re not only responsible for making your business what it is, you’re also working to promote your business, gain new clients and manage your day-to-day operations. It’s no wonder that marketing and small business branding tasks are often pushed to the back burner.
But while it may be easy to overlook marketing your business, creating a cohesive brand is one of the best things you can do to help your company grow.
There are many reasons why a customer chooses to work with a specific company or brand. But the number one reason is that the customer knows, likes and trusts that company and its work. Creating a cohesive small business brand ensures your company can be easily recognizable across all channels, whether in print or digital advertising, on social media or when walking by your product in a store.
What Makes a Small Business Brand?
So you want to create a brand for small business. But what does creating a cohesive small business branding strategy actually entail? While it may seem like a monumental task, creating your own business branding guidelines doesn’t have to be hard.
A large part of your branding work will revolve around the visual representations of your company.
Social media profile and cover images
Ensuring you’re using consistent fonts, colors and imagery across all your channels helps customers more readily recognize your small business brand - and recognizing (knowing) your brand helps your customers grow to like and trust you as well.
But branding is more than just the ways your company represents itself visually - it also includes the way your company conducts itself online, in customer communications and its overall “voice.”
If you’re telling your customers that you’re committed to offering the best customer service, for example, then consistent engagement on your social media channels, fast response times to email and messages and an easy-to-use contact form would be key parts of your overall brand.
How to Make Small Business Branding a Priority
Making time for branding can be hard, but it is so important for the growth and professionalism of your small business. If you want to make branding a priority for your company, here are a few ways to make this work easier:
Use Canva. Canva is a fantastic resource for all your design needs, from logos and letterhead to social media images of all sizes. Pay just a little more than $10 a month, and you can set up branding guidelines within Canva, with set colors, fonts and other elements ready for use in all your imagery. Of course, while Canva simplifies branding work, it still requires you to do the work yourself.
Try Skillshare to learn basic design skills. You don’t need years of experience in graphic design to get started with creating a cohesive brand for your small business. Using a site like Skillshare, which offers hundreds of free (or nearly free) online courses in Photoshop, Illustrator and other design programs, can make your marketing work more efficient, saving you time.
Hire a freelance marketing consultant. You may not have the need or bandwidth to hire a full-time marketing employee, but working with a freelance small business marketing consultant (like me!) can make branding and other marketing tasks faster and easier, leaving you with more free time to manage the parts of your business that you do best.
Interested in learning more about small business marketing and small business branding? Send me an email so I can share my expertise! I’d love to learn more about your business and how I could help you with a complete branding package or specific marketing tasks.