by Don Kyle
“Brand” is derived from the Old Norse word, “brandr” which means “to burn,” and refers to producers who burned their marks (or brand) onto their products. This was their way of distinguishing their products from those of others.
Modern day branding originated in the 19th century with the advent of packaged goods as production of many household items shifted from local communities to centralized factories. Manufacturers quickly realized that it was difficult for their generic packaged goods to compete with familiar, local products and therefore needed to convince the consumers that their products could be trusted just as much as local products. Hence, the beginning of modern day branding.
So what does this mean to local business owners and why is this important? Just as the manufacturers did in early years, your company must become THE trusted source in your market so that when consumers think about purchasing the type products or services offered by your business, your “brand” will be the first on their minds.
But how do I build my brand? The basic steps to building a brand for your business are as follows.
- Define Your Brand — products and services offered and related quantities; the company’s core values, mission, and specialization; target market; company tagline, etc. You can then create a business personality using this information, which can then be used to create a strategic plan to form a relationship with your target market.
- Determine Your Brand’s Objectives — a clear definition of your brand’s audience and the objectives your brand needs to achieve.
- Focus on Your Target Audience — regardless of your brand’s mission, identifying and gaining the loyalty of your target audience is the goal.
- Discover and Crush Your Brand Barriers — analyze the barriers (competition, demand, location, etc.) that you may encounter and develop a strategy to overcome them.
- Determine that Your Brand Packaging is Reflecting the Right Company Image — what is your company image saying to the marketplace?
If you have questions or would like more information on branding your business, please feel free to contact me.
Don Kyle is the CEO and Founder of Small Bizz MBA, a company which assists businesses with their marketing, branding and advertising needs. (404) 580-6331, firstname.lastname@example.org