Look at a local level. Let’s take two restaurants in a commercial plaza. One has a home-made image and the other in professionally designed. I would bet that the professionally designed image would initially attract more customers by sheer virtue that people figure that perhaps it’s a chain, and it must be good due to the assumption of percieved value. Then of course once inside the menu has has to compliment the brand.

Diversification is the riskiest area for a business. This is where a new product is sold to a new market.[83] There are two type of Diversification; horizontal and vertical. 'Horizontal diversification focuses more on product(s) where the business is knowledgeable, whereas vertical diversification focuses more on the introduction of new product into new markets, where the business could have less knowledge of the new market.[84] marketing 101, understanding marketing basics, and fundamentals

Diversification is the riskiest area for a business. This is where a new product is sold to a new market.[83] There are two type of Diversification; horizontal and vertical. 'Horizontal diversification focuses more on product(s) where the business is knowledgeable, whereas vertical diversification focuses more on the introduction of new product into new markets, where the business could have less knowledge of the new market.[84] marketing 101, understanding marketing basics, and fundamentals


Branding, by definition, is a marketing practice in which a company creates a name, symbol or design that is easily identifiable as belonging to the company. This helps to identify a product and distinguish it from other products and services. Branding is important because not only is it what makes a memorable impression on consumers but it allows your customers and clients to know what to expect from your company. It is a way of distinguishing yourself from the competitors and clarifying what it is you offer that makes you the better choice. Your brand is built to be a true representation of who you are as a business, and how you wish to be perceived.
Starting with a good logo can only be a good thing. The fact that someone has the common sense to ‘do it right’ out of the gate has at least a bit of the common sense to build a foundation for an eventual ‘design language’. By language, I mean the Brand. Consistency, repitition, messaging, etc. — all the things you mention become a business’s personality which, when combined with all interactions/transactions the business performs, ultimately become the customer experience and/or Brand. It’s what the customer remembers. It’s what decides whether or not they will do business with you again.
Think of your audience not as a large group without a face, but rather an individual you’d sit down for cup of tea with. Now, when writing your blog posts, or reaching out on social media to announce your next product line, think about that person. What do they want from you? What kind of incentives can you provide? Do they want to hang out with you? It’s always good to create a brand where people want to hang.

Want to get the word out there and boost your visibility on social media without taking years to build the audience? Then you should certainly leverage influencers. But the key is to find the right influencer. You don't have to go with influencers with millions of followers. You could opt for micro-influencers with tens of thousands or even a hundred thousand followers.
Believe us -- your personas are definitely looking for the information that you’re able to provide -- if you write about it. After friends and family, blogs are the third most trusted source of information. Plus, that content will also serve as material to populate your social media networks, and we’ve already covered what a crucial part that plays in branding on a budget.
Developing competitive strategy requires significant judgement and is based on a deep understanding of the firm's current situation, its past history and its operating environment. No heuristics have yet been developed to assist strategists choose the optimal strategic direction. Nevertheless, some researchers and scholars have sought to classify broad groups of strategy approaches that might serve as broad frameworks for thinking about suitable choices.
The design of your logo really doesn’t matter. Would you choose MSN as your search engine over Google because of their logo? No, having a nice professional logo is great, but it very rarely increases sales. I’m all for a professional logo, but don’t think you need to spend a fortune on it. It’s more important to include your logo on every piece of communication. Put it on business cards, letterhead, envelopes, invoices, yellow page ads, building signage, newsletters, etc…
Is your brand experimental, creative and innovative? Always a step ahead stylistically? Well, naturally you want to make sure your branding reflects just that. This template kit uses strongly contrasting reds, blues and blacks, and simple widely spaced type to create a design that is just as sleek as it is modern. With minimal graphic elements, this template makes it all too quick and easy to stay on trend. how to write a marketing plan? step by step guide + templates
If you are looking to build a lasting brand and a growing company, this is something you definitely want to think about creating. Imagine having to retrain 20, 30, or even 100 employees in “your style”, “your voice”, “how to write blogs”; a style guide can save you time and keep your brand consistent. We love this brand style guide example from MailChimp.
This book will help you fashion a brand that is fresh and new. By shifting the focus from products to people, this book will help you create the “feel” you want to convey with your brand. Furthering its reputation as a current and modern resource is the fact that it’s the first marketing book that examines the influence of the LGBTQ community on several brands.

I can’t tell from your post what things you’ve NOT done, but I imagine you’ve done quite a bit of Nick’s list. As a caveat to others who may be reading this as a small business owner, I’d say that because brand is so integrated in everything you do, if you DON’T pay attention to the brand you WON’T see the sales. In other words, you can’t afford to ignore the brand. For start-ups, that means planning for non-revenue generating work – brand development – before you start seeing sales. We call those investments “table stakes” because it’s what you have to do just to establish your brand, even before the first sale is made. If we could get sales without managing the brand, there’d be no reason to manage the brand. The Ultimate Content Marketing Strategy for 2020

For instance, you produce equipment of machines, you are doing a business-to-business space. It requires a different approach than business-to-consumer marketing because there several more steps involved in it. You need to find out the decision makers and find out ways to persuade them to business with you. to do this, you need to build a relationship with them by providing superlative services. The Secret Behind Coca-Cola Marketing Strategy


I know it’s an older post Nick, but it’s extremely relevant still today. We realized that the most important driving force out there is .. people.. as you outlined in your last tip. I was working with a company, and we went so far as to change our motto to “People First.” just because of that aspect. Great post. I’d say you should update it, but there isn’t much to add besides social media aspects. Branding Your Personal Brand / Creative Business | Build a Strong, Cohesive Brand Identity

Do what you say you’re going to do. I know it may sound like common sense, but one of the primary drivers of brand loyalty is a consistent experience. If you say you’re going to have the photographs ready on a set day, be sure they are ready. Nothing leaves a bad taste in someone’s mouth like missed expectations. Positive experiences lead to good feelings which lead to telling their friends. But don’t forget that bad experiences spread much faster and are harder to overcome – if you get a chance at all.
Know your products. Spend time articulating the benefits of your products in addition to the features. How will they make a difference in someone's life? Why does that matter to your customers? The most effective marketing speaks to the emotions of consumers, and that connection is created when you can articulate the benefit your business provides. 4 Principles of Marketing Strategy | Brian Tracy

Amen, Nick. To all of the above. In particular, though, my mantra (and at this point i should have it tattoed on my forehead) “perception is reality.” that’s both the good news and the bad news. the good news is that we are all in control of how we are perceived, and that’s where individual branding plays such a critical role. nothing is arbitrary/leave nothing to chance!
Amen, Nick. To all of the above. In particular, though, my mantra (and at this point i should have it tattoed on my forehead) “perception is reality.” that’s both the good news and the bad news. the good news is that we are all in control of how we are perceived, and that’s where individual branding plays such a critical role. nothing is arbitrary/leave nothing to chance! Go-To-Market Strategy: The Simple and Easy Way
A buyer persona is simply a description of the person you’re trying to reach. You might have several. Give the persona a name. Write out the features of that person (“Sally has a master’s degree and likes buying organic food”) to illustrate her and get to know her. Then, when you do your marketing, keep that “person” in mind and address your messaging to her specifically.
Blogs are good, but they’re just one tool. A blog should not be your sole marketing strategy. You should have a comprehensive multi-touch marketing plan to get your value proposition in front of your target audience. This can take many forms. You can launch a direct mail campaign, email campaign, host a webinar, sponsor a local event, attend a trade show, attend networking events, cold call prospects, win awards, etc… There are a thousand different ways for you to be noticed. You have to find the best combination of methods for your strategic goals. Data shows that people need to be exposed to a brand at least seven times before they buy. If you simply do one touch and stop, you’re wasting valuable budget dollars and probably wondering why your efforts are not successful. 100 Ways to Market Yourself and Your Business with No Money

Barney stated that for resources to hold potential as sources of sustainable competitive advantage, they should be valuable, rare and imperfectly imitable.[75] A key insight arising from the resource-based view is that not all resources are of equal importance nor possess the potential to become a source of sustainable competitive advantage.[73] The sustainability of any competitive advantage depends on the extent to which resources can be imitated or substituted.[6] Barney and others point out that understanding the causal relationship between the sources of advantage and successful strategies can be very difficult in practice.[75] Barney uses the term "causally ambiguous" which he describes as a situation when "the link between the resources controlled by the firm and the firm's sustained competitive advantage is not understood or understood only very imperfectly." Thus, a great deal of managerial effort must be invested in identifying, understanding and classifying core competencies. In addition, management must invest in organisational learning to develop and maintain key resources and competencies. A Beginner's Guide to Branding Your Business
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