They say Branding is what people say about you when you aren’t in the room. So….what are people saying about you? Does your brand leave an impression?
Over the past few years as a graphic designer, I have had all different types of clients come my way and usually the questions and concerns they have are pretty similar (especially for new business owners). A lot of people have a misunderstanding that they do not need a logo or a consistent brand. This could not be further from the truth! The FIRST thing you need is a logo and a consistent brand! You need people to be able to see a glimpse of you and know who you are and that you’re professional. That is how you get (and keep) customers/clients.
Every Business Needs A Brand!
And before you even try to put your hand up and tell me that you’re excluded because you’re in network marketing, let me make something clear…every business needs a brand! Especially if you are in network marketing and want to separate yourself from the other millions of people selling the same exact thing you are. It’s no different from me! Other people sell graphics, business coaching, and other things that I do but, I’ve created a brand to stand out from the herd and so should you! You need something that stands out and people come back to you not someone else selling the same product.
Does a brand make you successful?
Honestly, in my time watching my customers grow and expand the most successful people (from direct marketing companies) are those that created a brand on top of their company. They have purchased a domain and their awesome domain www.myawesomeproduct.com is redirected to their home ordering page (AdvoCare for example), in some cases it is even a blog with a link to the store. Not only have they set their domain, but they also use a professional email address such as name(at)myawesomeproduct.com. Plus they have purchased business cards with this same information. These are the clients that seem to be more successful.
Does this mean I need a thousand dollar brand?
No! It can be as simple as coming up with a few important fonts and using them for your logo, your social graphics, etc. Once you’ve acquired a logo…use it! Put it on your business cards, your Facebook page, and even on your website. I have seen many people spend money on a logo and then use a premade website template and not use their logo. Not only are they not creating a complete brand, they are not creating recognition. Nike’s simple check mark is so popular that you could see it by its self and instantly think of Nike. Coca-Colas font is so recognizable that you could see it written in your name and you’d know…that’s the Coca-Cola font. Create something that is relate-able to your business, that when people see it, they think of you.
Last year I ordered a cute phone case from a girl off of Etsy for maybe around $17 plus shipping. On the outside of the package was her company logo, address, and of course…my address. Once I opened the package the first thing I saw was her business card, a thank you note (same size as her business card) with a discount for my next order, and underneath that was my phone case wrapped neatly in yellow tissue (her logo had a cute in it) with a cute sticker holding the tissue closed…with her logo on it.
Now, I know not all of you get as turned on as I do for amazing graphics and terrific branding, but…let me explain this to you. I purchased a $17 item (seventeen dollars, that’s it!) from her and she sent me her brand. To this day I recognize her brand. In fact, every time I see a bee similar to hers I think of her company, her brand! I have recommended my friends to her, kept her business card, and possible might have taken pictures of the package when I opened it and sent it to a few friends/clients to show them that this is branding! This is what it should look like when you send out a $100 item or a $10 item.
I don’t know the lady that sent me the phone case personally, nor did I do her logo (dang it!), but I can tell you that I not only remembered her all this time later…I sent people to her. I think about her. She took my tagline ‘Stand out from the Herd’ and put it to use for sure! If someone mentions purchasing a phone case…I think of her!
I know, I know…I’m was a graphic designer, branding is all I think about. Try adding a special touch and putting your branding on everything and see if you get compliments and some recognition.
How can you copy her branding method to be memorable?
You sell jewelry: send your package all wrapped up (yes, it takes a little extra time but if you’re looking to be successful and have repeat business…well worth it) with your business card (or two), a cute sticker on the tissue paper, a ‘thank you for your order’ or discount on your next order card, and an address label with the same matching branding and Viola! You’ve just placed at least 4 branding items (5, if you include a printed invoice with your logo on it) and etched your business into their minds.
You sell AdvoCare: someone orders something from you but, it ships from the company and never touches your fresh mani…no problem! Send an envelope with a thank you card (your logo or name on the front of it) thanking them for the order, send a business card (one or two) so they have it for the future, add a sticker to the closing side of the envelope, add your logo/name as a stamp or sticker for the return address. Now you’ve just taken an extra step to put your brand in front of them so that they remember you plus you’ve now gone the extra mile and upped your customer service experience. Want to take it a step further? Send them a sample of a product they haven’t used yet or a new flavor of spark in the envelope just because.
If you are someone who does not sell products the above network marketing trick works for your business as well! When I had a store on Etsy, I’d send thank you postcards to everyone with a discount code for reordering. I can’t tell you how many people used that code on my website from weeks later to years later. Plus, because I sent them to my website instead of Etsy, I saved money on fees and got more traffic on my website!
I’d love to know, where are you in your branding? Do you do anything special for your clients/customers to help you stand out?