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How to Build a Small Business Brand Online

Published!

Finally…whew that’s a load off.

Working with designers is tough but you’ve both finally come up with a design that’ll build your small business brand online.

Because after all, graphics rule the social interaction.

No?

Uhm can you say Pinterest and Instagram?

All I’m saying is I bet you or your clients focus heavily on brand image.

And you should.

But I hope you don’t think that online presences, no matter how pretty, are actual brands.

*Chuckles*

 

You build a small business brand online-absolutely nothing happens

I mean, what could’ve possibly gone wrong?

I know you’re all over the social media thang like red 40 on M&M’s…

I think you fumbled though, just a little.

Focusing on the design aspect of branding is only 30% of what it takes to build a small business brand online.

You read me right my lovies.

Small business branding, branding period, is NOT your logo, website, social media activity, or color scheme.

Branding is the emotional connection your customers develop about your small business.

Seeeeeeeeee, fellas emotions aren’t a girl thing :- P

Emotions are a people thing.

We don’t buy because we researched rigorously and came to the most logical solution.

We buy because we have an emotional connection to the BRAND of a product that we just so happen to want/need. Tweet this

 

Build a Small Business Brand 101

Branding is not your online presence.

The visual stuff is just the representation of your brand.

So no, Step 1 to a successful online business is not to build a website.

Not even to build a logo.

When I thought about this topic for today’s blog I went looking for graphics to support my position.

I found this awesome infographic on visual.ly.

But even it has the 11 steps it offers a bit jumbled.

 

So…How to build a small business brand online

From the inside out.

Building a small business brand is not a cut and paste operation.

No siree bob it sho is not.

But there are definitely some steps you can take.

For the full skinny on how I advise my peeps and clients to build a small business brand check out my blog series Do this, Don’t do that…yet: Steps To a Successful Online Business.

Wait, don’t click through just yet!

I know you’re excited but cool the engine captain, we’ve still got to wrap up our current discussion on how to build a small business brand online.

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Outta Order

Now the Infographic has the proper points on branding a small biz, BUT they’re out of order, so before you check it out consider implementing their advice in this order:

#1 2. Focus on a single purpose-Before you can pick a business name you have to be focused on your single purpose. Your USP=unique selling proposition can help you make a clearer, more creative decision on a business name.

#2 3. Make a promise– These two are in the right order. Except instead of #2 & #3 it should be #1 & #2 on this list. Once you have a purpose you can make a promise.

#3 8. Find your Voice– Why this is listed as number 8 I’ll never know. You’ve got the purpose and promise it’s time you start defining your brand. What tone will you use to communicate your brand? What emotions are you trying to elicit?

#4 5. Define your personality– You can’t define your personality without having your voice. Your business’ personality needs to be integrated into everything you present to the world. If the Voice is WHAT, this is the HOW.

#5 4. Differentiate yourself– I think they have this defined improperly altogether actually. Differentiating yourself is an action. It should already be identified through the first two steps. By this time, you’re strategizing how to position what you’ve uncovered through the steps above.

#6 1. Pen a distinctive name– Again, I’m baffled at why this is number 1 on their list. Pick a business name before you define the brand? *Shrugs shoulders* At this point you KNOW your business’s uniqueness and can start bouncing ideas around for a creative way to communicate it through the business name.

#7 7. Create a distinctive look– This one has pretty good placement. Create your graphics and overall look only after you’ve defined, outlined and strategized. Doing this first IS a waste of money. You’ll be choosing colors and imagery based on ?

#8 9. Encourage interaction-Once you’ve got the look together and published, how will you encourage folks to interact? You should already have that answered by the way, now do it.

#9 10. Become a thought leader-Now that you’re encouraging interaction, engage. Stay on top of the industry. Most importantly stay on top of your consumers growing concerns. Then explicate solutions and opinions to be the go to source.

#10 6. Align with a cause– Lol, really number 6? Before you even find your voice (#8 on the list) or create your look (#7 on their list) you’re supposed to create partnerships? Yea, no. This is good advice but only after you KNOW your brand. Not before.

11. Start a community– This one is rightfully placed. Create your community after you’ve paid your dues by being valuable to the existing ones.

Okay, now you can check out the inforgraphic-

Building a Small Business Brand Online

 

Anything missing?

What’s your advice on how to build a small business brand online?

Talk to me about it in the comments. And please share this post with your audience. Preciate cha!

Oooh next week is the beginning of the last days of 2012! I’m excited for the year to come. Aren’t you!

Lata folks.

 

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