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Millionaire Money Habits

November 25th, 2011 at 10:29 am

How to Brand Your Way to Wealth

There are many things that can make a company successful.  One is having a product or service that many people want or need.  In fact, it’s nearly impossible to be successful without this.  But even the best products and services won’t save you if nobody knows you exist.  So you’ll need to engage in some advertising efforts to get your name on the lips of the consumer public and usher people in the door.  Of course, you should also shoot for good reviews and positive media attention.  And you’ll want to ensure that both customers and employees are satisfied since they will be the ambassadors of your business.  You might even engage in environmentally-friendly practices or host charity events to give back to the community and garner good publicity.  In truth, all of these avenues to success are part of one common goal: building up a brand image.

Many small business owners mistakenly assume that they don’t have a “brand”.  They may associate the word with mega-corporations like McDonalds, Delta Airlines, and Sony (for example).  But every company has a brand image, including yours, and just because you choose to ignore that fact doesn’t mean that consumers aren’t forming opinions about your business.  All you’re doing by neglecting to manage your brand identity is ensuring that others (the media, competitors, etc.) control how your brand is perceived by the public.  In order to keep your brand image in line with your business goals you absolutely must determine how it is shaped as much as possible.

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to endear customers to your brand, as well as spin any negative attention that comes your way.  And if your goal is financial gains (as it is for most companies), then you need to address both of these issues.  A good place to start is with the products or services you offer.  Are they necessary and/or popular?  Do you receive bad reviews or persistent customer complaints?  Do you seem to be losing money even though your products are the best available on the market?  If you’re facing such issues, you’ve made a wrong turn with your branding strategy.  First you need to offer the public something they can’t live without.  Then you need to convince them that they can’t live without it.  And finally, you need to stand by your assertion by ensuring that customers receive the service and consideration that will keep them loyal.  In short, the customer is always right.

Of course, you first need to notify potential customers that you’re in business.  Advertising can be an effective (but expensive) means to this end.  But thanks to emerging technologies you can communicate with a broad range of consumers through targeted efforts online and in the mobile space, including a website, blogs, and social networking outlets like Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, and more.  You’ll need to keep your finger on the pulse of pop culture, but it can really pay off in exposure.  And of course, you should create a store that is appealing to customers, both in the real world and in virtual space.  So consider your décor, store signs, and employee appearance as well as the design of your website and online store.  Building and maintain a brand image is no easy feat, but if you want to realize wealth in your business venture you can’t afford to ignore the impact of your brand.

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