Is branding the same as marketing? Does it have some tried-and-true procedures like marketing does? Neil Patel keeps it simple by explaining in his Kissmetrics blog post: marketing is a tool used to acquire clients and branding is what attracts them to you in the first place and what keeps them coming back.
On the same viewpoint, the following are five rules of branding that have been true for almost 100 years:
1. If you want to grow, launch a distinct brand
Offering too much is not a bad thing if you are able to keep up with the demand, such as McDonald’s, which makes billions yearly. But, offering too much under the same brand is a mistake.
Some say that Microsoft is an example of one of the largest cases of brand-extension failures. While it is still a leader in its industry in some important markets, there was a time where Microsoft totally dominated the tech market. At this time, they launched a bunch of new products under the Microsoft name.
This is when Apple came from the back door and took away Microsoft’s main clients with new, strong brands such as the iPod, iPhone, and iPad. Apple is now the biggest tech company in the world, and Microsoft is rated sixth.
Luckily, if you’re contemplating starting a new brand, being an individual is much better than being a faceless business. So, you can take advantage of your great reputation for your new brand’s website.
2. Offer less and you will be more remembered
Offering too much will confuse the customer and will weaken your brand name. And customers are always going to link it to the product that first put you on their radar.
McDonald’s is a great example of a business that moved away from doing this but ended up failing into it. When its popularity started, there were diners everywhere and the menu only had nine items. Nowadays, the dinner offers everything on its menu but it had to reinvent itself many times in order to compete with the new burger competitor such as Five Guys.
3. Your salespeople are ratings and reviews
In general, people think they need a strong set of interpersonal and communication skills in order to close a sale. They have, ultimately, internalized the belief that they are most competent to sell their service or product. In fact, their clients are much more adept to making the sale.
While the marketing pipeline is much more complex than ever, clients’ ratings and reviews are just as essential. Over 85 percent of customers trust online reviews just as much as personal references.
Why not start telling your leads that you evaluate yourself on how willing they are to refer you once you’ve finished. In this matter, you organize for them to leave you a LinkedIn recommendation and refer an acquaintance.
4. Don’t use a basic name
Today’s largest tech companies have memorable names, such as Google, Facebook, and Amazon. There are also innumerable basic named start-ups that went busts, such as Pets.com, iMotors, and eToys.com. These companies raised between $50 million and $165 million, but are gone, despite their great ideas.
Evidently, these companies didn’t only fail because of their basic names, but the generic in them certainly didn’t help. Choose a name that isn’t common.
5. Advertise what you do, not what you sell
A lot of companies denounce that, compared to others, they offer unique offerings. The main problem with this plan: no matter how much you persuade them, clients most probably won’t care about your unique value proposition.
What you need to do specifically is to focus on what you help people accomplish instead of promoting what you sell.