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The importance of branding and tips on getting it right

5th November 2017 Print

Branding goes beyond your logo or slogan although of course this is part of it – it actually involves every aspect of a customer’s experience from your social media posts to staff uniforms and even the way you interact with customers. 

When you see the yellow M with the red background you automatically know it is McDonalds, don’t you? Or when Innocent comes to mind you think of their funny and playful tone of voice across their social media pages. What about Tesco, do you follow it with ‘every little helps’? 

Ultimately branding is the way in which your customer perceives you when they hear or think about your company. 

Why is this branding so important? 

- Recognition: branding is important to promote your business, so that current and potential customers and clients instantly know your company when they see it and to tie together all your marketing efforts. If you are consistent you will be easy to recognise, which will build brand awareness so that you feel familiar to people and then they are more comfortable buying from you. 

- Sets you apart from the competition: you have to stand out from the crowd and more importantly your direct competition. Your branding will help you to do this, even among those businesses that are very similar to you. 

- Generate referrals: we are always telling friends and family about the brands we love, which then encourages them to check it out too. Get your branding right and it will create referrals and viral traffic because your social media followers will help do the work for you as they share your tweets and posts. Really impress them and they will discuss you without any prompting. 

- Sets expectation: A professional appearance will build trust as well as credibility. If people know what to expect from your business they will keep coming back. 

How do you get it right?  

Start with your logo: when you see the black tick you instantly know it is Nike – this is why your logo is very important part of your branding. Start here, so that you can keep the colour and image consistent across every part of your company and marketing. This will feature everywhere from your office wall to the business card you hand out to prospective clients and potential customers. 

You should take your time and think carefully about this because the colours you choose will say a lot about your company. 

Develop a tone of voice: a key part of your branding is developing a tone of voice – this plays a big part when people form an opinion of you and can be the thing that initially draws them in. 

Keep this consistent across your content: it is important to stay consistent – or on brand – across all content, from your website to social media. You might find opportunities land in your lap to show your personality, like this pun-tastic conversation between Sainsbury’s and a ‘customer.’ 

Likewise, The London Dungeon’s Valentine's Day campaign is a reminder that if you get it wrong, it is too late once you have posted it online – even if you do delete it and apologise.     

Make sure it ties your marketing together: your brand should be instantly recognisable across all marketing from posters and leaflets to brochures and business cards. Each one needs careful thought because it is representing your brand – it will include your logo, tone of voice and company colours as well as any relevant information. 

For example, there are several types of business cards to choose from and this is an important decision because it says more about your brand than you might think. Foil business cards are perfect to show that you are a high-end company while uncoated cards, made from recycled stock, show that you care about the environment. 

Determining your brand and then ensuring this branding is consistent across every part of your business will ultimately help you to succeed and therefore is worth spending time on right from the beginning.