Think of some of the most recognizable brands in the world – Coca Cola, Google, Wal-Mart…
How did they get there?
It’s tough and it takes a ton of work, but eventually it all boils down to a few tactics.
What are some of those? Here’s a few:
Your ability to deliver on your promise – At its core, this is what branding is all about. The better you can deliver on your promise, and even exceed what you promise in general, the stronger the identity of your brand in your market’s mind.
Google, for example, promises to deliver more relevant search results than any other search engine. It does that consistently, which helps it remain the leading search engine today. “Under-promise and over-deliver” goes the cliché. Whatever your business’s promise is, make sure you can exceed it when it comes time to deliver the finished product.
Establish core values and stick to them – How many times have you heard business talk about their “excellent customer service” and then refuse to do the slightest thing once you actually call them? If you establish a core value of “superior customer service,” develop concrete mechanisms and business procedures to ensure your customer service really does exceed that of the competition.
Whatever your core values are, make sure you practice them daily. One way or another, they shine through to your customers, who take notice when you do what you say you will do.
Identify a clear audience and maintain consistent messaging – Make sure you know who you’re talking to. If you don’t have a customer persona in place, research the heck out of your market until you identify one. You should know everything there is to know about your customer – what they like and don’t like, what they read, what their income is, whether they have children, and where they hang out after work.
Then develop a message for them that solves a major problem. However you reach them – online, through social media, on television, or on the radio, make sure you repeat the same message consistently. Then, as they experience the problem over and over, they’ll remember you are the best solution for that problem.
Here’s to You Becoming the Next Google
It’s tough to become the leading brand in any niche, but simply by committing to becoming a brand and establishing a presence, you put yourself ahead of other small businesses not doing the same. If you don’t become the next Google, you will at least remain ahead of the others while they keep spinning their wheels going nowhere.