The beginning of a new year is a time to reflect and look forward. It’s when we set goals for the coming year, both personally and professionally. As a business owner, one of your goals may be to grow your business in 2023. Do you have a plan in place already?
An overlooked strategy to position your business for future growth is improving brand recognition. Let's explore what that means and the steps you can take to position your business for success. Some are simpler than you may think!
Brand Awareness – A Basic Overview
Brand awareness simply refers to the level of public recognition your business has achieved, the perceptions people have about your brand and the products and services you offer.
Brand awareness is at the top of the marketing funnel. People are most likely to buy from a company whose name and brand they recognize.
The Importance of Brand Awareness
Think of brand awareness as a tool. It is imperative because:
- A recognizable brand leads to customer consideration.
- It builds confidence in your products and services.
- It leads customers to choose you over the competition.
How to Build Brand Recognition
Generating positive brand awareness is not a one-time effort. Nor is it a one-size-fits-all strategy. There is no single formula that fits all scenarios. However, there are many techniques that can set you on the path to your goal.
Generate Word of Mouth
We all know that the experiences and opinions of friends and family can influence the way we shop and choose our affiliations. Consider the message you want your customers to send to others.
Here are some ideas on how to generate trust, support, and enthusiasm:
- Provide Quality Service: Every member of your staff is a reflection of your brand, so place the focus on positive client experiences.
- Create a Referral Program: Satisfied customers will tell others about their experience. They may be even more inclined to do so if you offer some sort of incentive.
- Support Other Businesses: Be a real part of your community. Remember, a "rising tide lifts all boats"!
- Encourage Customer Reviews and Testimonials: Showcase your best reviews and be open to suggestions about how you can improve.
Use Social Media as a Strategic Tool
Social media platforms have a powerful influence on behavior, buying patterns, and brand recognition. A targeted approach can be highly effective. No matter which channels you choose, make sure your posts are informative and meaningful. Support a cause, recognize your associates, introduce new products, feature a community event, or post helpful advice. Your social media presence offers almost unlimited possibilities to spotlight your brand.
Community support can be offered in many ways – through monetary donations, sponsorships, volunteerism, and even informational seminars. When it comes to giving back, encourage your team members to take part as a group or individually.
Consider offering volunteer days where associates can volunteer for the day while still getting paid to participate in a local project. As an alternative, start a program that recognizes volunteer hours and offers a quarterly or annual bonus for reaching a specific level.
Your team will feel good about the positive impact they contribute to, and your company will score a victory for public support.
Look for Inspiration
You don't have to be a non-profit organization to think like one. What famous brand catches your attention? And why are you attracted to that business model? What are the qualities of that business or brand that contribute to its longevity?
Sometimes thinking in these broader terms can help you identify areas where your business can improve on the brand recognition front.
- What drives you and your business?
- What makes you different from your competition?
- What is the promise to your customers?
- What makes your business unique?
- How do you want people to think of your business?
Understanding the most foundational elements of what makes you and your business tick can help you hone in on where you should focus your efforts to improve brand recognition.
For a brand recognition strategy to be successful, you need to stand behind it and your associates need to be knowledgeable enough to understand the direction your business is heading in – so they can support it. Engage your team in the discussion, if possible, and elicit their support from the outset. Improving your brand recognition can be a fun team-building experience.
Get off to a great start in 2023. Map out some opportunities to make your business stand out for all the right reasons. Read more of our articles to boost your business.