The Importance of Branding Your Small Business and Simple Ways to Achieve It

If you own a small business you are on a path that is less traveled. Many people wake up day in and day out wishing to quit their day job and many are still forming those same statements as they approach their retirement ages. As small business owners, however, the easy part is setting it all up. The hard part is getting the customers.

In my opinion, customers can be classified into two categories which are the one time buyers and the repeat customers. The definitions are pretty self-explanatory and a good mix of both would be ideal for any business. I truly feel that the repeat customer is most important and should equate to majority of the business. Why? Well they are loyal as they have made a purchase and know of the buying experience. Humans tend to follow a safe routine which is probably why so many people continue to work their day job as they know they are pretty much guaranteed a paycheck.

The same goes for customers. If you give them the experience they want, at least once, they tend to return but there is one key to obtaining a repeat customer and that would be branding. Think about it. If I walk into a random store and make a purchase without even looking at the sign on the billboard, I am walking in blindly to find out what they have, but I will know the name before I leave even if I don't make a purchase. The employees usually have name tags with the name of the business one them. There are usually posters or signs hanging with logos that tell you the name of the business and more times than not a slogan is included. It sticks with you and once you need a certain item you would associate it with the store due to the brand.

So, how exactly can you take advantage of branding without breaking the bank? Follow the tips below:

Develop a Color Scheme

You don't have to hire a graphic designer to make your logo, though that would be ideal, but the key is consistent color schemes. Pick three or so colors that relate to your business. For example if you own a flower shop, colors that come to mind are green, purple, blue, yellow, and brown just to name a few. Find a combination that works and try to follow it in your shop or any chance you get to make an impression on a potential customer as it shows some kind of consistency.

Put Your Name on It

If it is a receipt, a flyer, a coupon, or a tee-shirt have your name on it. Follow your color scheme if at all possible but even if not, make sure you don't forget to put your name in a visible place. Many people make the mistake of having acronyms before being a familiar business and leave people wondering what it stands for. Make sure there is no guesswork as there is enough going through a new customer's head as is. If you do have an acronym, please include what it stands for and make it easy for them.

Don't Overdo It but NEVER Forget to Do It

There is a fine line between promoting and annoying. Smart execution of branding is more effective than placing banners and signs everywhere. I've once visited a company where signs were over bathroom stalls. Effective maybe, but not after it being seen on every single item in the facility. The problem was the color scheme as the colors did not fit well together which in turn made it a pain more than a pleasure because it wasn't easy on the eyes.

If you have a store I would notice customers' behavior and note how they spend their time. If there is a very popular rack or area then that would be a perfect place to reiterate the brand. The front door is always a great way to start the branding because people really like to know what they are walking into.

These simple tips can really go a long way as they are small changes but effective ones that could be within your budget.

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