In my last article, What Branding Means, I talk to you about how branding adds value and is more than logos, colors, and fonts. Today, I want to go just a bit deeper and talk about why branding is important. Let’s talk about your competition!
It is essential because it’s a communicative tool that helps you stand out from your competitors.
If you don’t know who your competitors are, I highly suggest that you look for either your local or online competitors to see how they’re presenting themselves publicly to your prospects in common.
How are you the same?
How are you different?
When it comes to differences, how can you highlight your strengths in areas they’re weak?
How can you spark their emotion, so they want to check you out?
Emotion is key.
Beyond website research, jump in the car. When you drive around town, take a look at the different signs and slogans. Don’t think about how they compel you to choose amongst them. Simply feel which one calls to you. That’s the magic of brands.
Great brands help you make decisions based on emotion rather than logic.
In Waterbury, CT, the Arby’s restaurant had this huge brown 10-gallon hat sign. I will never forget it! It screamed, “come here and eat.” It looked amusing and goofy. If I were hungry, I’d go there.
However, if there were a similar restaurant across the street serving the same menu, I’d never know it. I remember my parents driving by that Arby’s 30 years ago, and that sign certainly made an impression.
That’s how branding adds value. It was a head-turner for sure!
In my next article, I will talk to you about when branding goes wrong. We can undoubtedly search for significant corporate identity problems, but it also happens for small businesses. Unfortunately, a mistake has the power to shut down a small business.
Janet Johnson is a small business advisor and author of My Money Pivot: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Finding & Making More Money and this educational blog. All views expressed belong solely to Ms. Johnson and do not represent the views of her employer.