For a company to own its market, it must have some combination of brand, scale cost advantages, network effects, or proprietary technology. Of these elements, brand is probably the hardest to pin down. One way to think about brand is as a classic code word for monopoly.
But getting more specific than that is hard. Whatever a brand is, it means that people do not see products as interchangeable and are thus willing to pay more. Take Pepsi and Coke, for example. Most people have a fairly strong preference for one or the other. Both companies generate huge cash flows because consumers, it turns out, aren’t very indifferent at all. They buy into one of the two brands.
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Brands need to evolve in today’s changing times, but brand building still requires consistency of thought, application and action. This is a major dilemma for marketers. On one hand there is a need to keep a brand relevant as tastes and preferences rapidly change. On the other hand, there is the fundamental principle of consistency when it comes to building strong brands.
Branding tips. Many entrepreneurs ignore branding because they consider it too expensive or don’t think they’ll need it until they reach a specific growth point. The truth is, however, that the longer you wait to brand, the more confusion you’ll create in the marketplace. So, instead, start with the basics and use the many free or inexpensive branding tools that won’t break the bank but will have a drive revenue.
When established brands face a reputational disaster – a product fails catastrophically, for example, or E. coli contaminates the menu -armies of specialists are brought in to help salvage customer trust and ease the business through its crisis. They marshal every resource available because they know these events can impact a company’s reputation for years, causing potential immeasurable harm.
The damage can be especially devastating if you’re an entrepreneur struggling to build your personal brand in today’s competitive market.
You’ll find no shortage of tips online about what it takes to succeed in business. Much of what’s out there is sound guidance, but not everything you see or hear will put you on the path to success. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to determine what is the product of genuine entrepreneurial wisdom and what is pure bunk. That means you need to be cautious and judicious when choosing the advice you follow. To help you steer clear of the myths that abound, below are some of the misconceptions when entrepreneurs build their brands.
Here are five ways to improve it.
Brands are people first. Customers are people too, so customers tend to take their relationship with a brand personally. Therefore, it’s not a surprise that people praise their favorite smartphone brand, cringe over the thought of their cable company or even hate the mention of a particular bank.
No matter how great your business idea is, you’ll never connect with consumers if you don’t have a good brand name. Choosing your brand name is one of the most important decisions you’ll make for your business, and it has a tremendous impact on how customers view you.
Choosing a brand name can be daunting, and it’s not something that should be taken lightly. But how do you choose a catchy business name that will work for you as well as attract customers?
Let’s get started, here’s how to come up with a brand name that sticks.
I’ve always struggled with self-promotion. Sure, I’ve done plenty of it — you pretty much can’t work in media without hawking your own work. But I’ve always felt awkward about it. Self-promotion feels a little like begging. I’ve always worried that it’s a burden — as if I’m saying, Here’s something I’m forcing you to care about. So I tried to mask that awkwardness with self-deprecating humor. When I recently launched an Entrepreneur podcast called Problem Solvers, for example, I emailed all my friends with the subject line, “In case you’re not sick of my voice.”
Why do so many of the brands you interact with every day have blue logos? The answer is science, not fashion.
Look at the home screen of your phone and you’ll probably see a ton of blue — Facebook, LinkedIn, Skype, all blue. Glance up at the real world and you’ll notice much the same. GM, Ford, Intel, Boeing, and Walmart all represent themselves in blue too. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
What’s going on here? Have all these brands fallen victim to some weird trend for blue logos, or is there a deeper reason so many diverse companies opted for essentially the exact same color for their branding? I recently stumbled on the fascinating answer to this question, and it’s not fashion, it’s science.
In today’s competitive markets, brands need to stand out to avoid a price war and a race to the bottom. Your uniqueness is there, you just have to find it. Here’s how. Brand positioning is what saves you from looking — and hence having to charge — like everyone else. The way your business differs from others tells potential buyers how and why you’re the right choice for them.