Everyone uses the term “branding” these days. Should you be thinking about your small business branding? What is a brand, anyhow? Here’s a one-word definition: it’s your reputation. Branding is the effort to influence that reputation.
This means every business is a brand, not just big companies like Coca-Cola or Nike. Small businesses are brands, too. But did the “brand” emerge accidentally during day-to-day operations, or was it created intentionally? Many small businesses don’t realize that they can more deliberately affect what people think of them. Intentional small business branding will give you an advantage. It creates loyalty and growth.
Your branding can result in potential customers ignoring you. Or it can draw them in. A beautiful logo and website, sharp business cards, and an enticing storefront—when combined with all the other great things about your business—can take you to a new level of success. Research shows that companies that invest in design are about 50% more profitable than those that do not.
Your product or service might be the best out there. Your pricing might be perfectly calibrated. Your customer service might be outstanding. But potential customers might never get that far if they’re turned off by a weak logo, business card, or website. One study showed that reasons users mistrusted and dismissed websites were 94% design-related and only 6% content-related.
When the visual elements of your business are working right, they make a customer expect to be pleased with their purchase. And when customers have a positive expectation before they purchase, they’re more likely to rate your product higher after they purchase. Are you ready to take control of the impression you give?
Starting a new business is exciting. Recently I partnered with Wonderlich Dermatology to create a brand identity for the launch of their new practice. Located in Fairbanks, the clinic is a calm, friendly oasis serving interior Alaska. Everything needed to look modern, pleasing, and attractive to potential patients without being too formal or stuffy—something perfect for Fairbanks, not Manhattan. As the practice grows, we continue to create new collateral. I know that getting a top-notch small business off the ground is a ton of work for entrepreneurs, so I appreciated these kind words from the owner:
As another client wrote,
Are you a small business with your hands full? I’d love to tackle your brand identity. I can free you up to focus on making the other parts of your business outstanding.