We understand that branding is a big part of any business. When you’re able to establish an effective brand, your business is authoritative and trusted. Before delving into branding issues faced by small businesses, we must first understand what a brand is.

When people think of the word brand, there are a couple of things that come to mind. It could be signage, a logo, or an item used to market or sell product or services. While this is right, this is just a small aspect of what branding is. Think of it as a promise you make to your customers — letting them know the type of service they can expect from you, how you are different from the competition, and, most importantly, what you stand for.

Let’s think big for a minute and take a page out of the book of some of the biggest brand stories. How did they become so successful? While it’s easy to say they may have had a stroke of good luck or some influential support, the truth is that deliberate branding strategies were implemented to get recognized.

When it comes to smaller businesses, creating a viable brand strategy can pose some challenges. There isn’t a one size fits all plan that guarantees awareness. You have to consider branding as an art; it involves creating something different and new.

Branding is easy for companies with large budgets and a talented marketing department. But on the other hand, it can be quite challenging for a small business with limited resources.

Below are some branding challenges small businesses face.

The Ability to Accurately Define the Purpose of Your Brand and How It Differs from Others
A brand’s purpose should accurately describe why your business exists and how it differs from the competition. A brand that clearly articulates its purpose can help owners make decisions that add credence and improve customer satisfaction.
The focus of a small business, especially when starting out, is getting things running smoothly and efficiently. Very rarely is the focus on how to create a unique brand. Only after the business appears to be on its feet do owners think about how to turn their business into a recognizable local brand. Choosing to pay attention to branding early on can have a significant impact on logos, insignias, and other business-related collateral.

Making Your Brand Consistent
Consistency isn’t just about using brand colors and your logo in your marketing materials. It has more to do with ensuring your brand difference, and design is constant and portrayed in every area of your business and especially your company culture. Brand consistency means that when someone asks what your business stands for, you should be able to answer that by looking at it as a whole. The answer should resonate through everything that you do both personally and professionally.

Creating a Brand Personality and Voice
A brand personality and voice should be visible on marketing materials, social media, and email newsletters, etc. Its voice should be heard through every employee in every conversation. It speaks of purpose, mission, and quality service delivery. It should be an established personality combined with a distinctive, relatable voice, and able to create customer loyalty and referrals.

Creativity Issues
Creativity can be established in numerous ways, especially with the assistance of a professional branding and marketing agency to help guide you. Many businesses suffer from creativity issues, but larger companies and brands have the advantage of being able to reach into their coffers and create a solution.
Most business owners aren’t usually marketers, and to begin dominating the competition, they should consider outsourcing essential branding and marketing initiatives. The right marketing agency can provide you with innovative and creative ways to solve these problems and set the stage for your business to successfully evolve into a recognizable brand.
Beth Devine is one of the most sought-after marketing experts in the Central Valley. She is the founder and principal of Devine Solutions Group, a multiple award-winning digital marketing headquartered in Tracy, CA. Connect with Beth by either calling 833-933-8463 or email her at beth@devinesolutionsgroup.com.