Steve Jobs. Rita Sharma. Sir Richard Branson. They all took different paths to success, but they have one thing in common – they started out small.
For a small business to succeed, business owners should focus on ways to make their brand sustainable. This will ensure the company’s longevity in a business sector largely dominated by corporations. Here are some things every small business should think about when starting out.
- Sustainable business practices
In order to keep up with larger brands in the market, small businesses must think about the environmental impacts, and about how their actions in the present will impact their future. Consider both long and short-term goals that will help your business succeed and stay in line with sustainable trends.
- Develop a brand identity
Digital age culture relies on visual media, meaning that branding and marketing are vital to a company’s success. Small businesses should cultivate a unique brand identity that conveys their brand personality and provides insight into the type of service it provides.
- Nurture your business
Growing a business is a lot like growing a plant. It takes patience and a lot of TLC. To succeed, your business needs strong roots that will survive the ebbs and flows of the market. Like pruning a plant, you will sometimes have to cut back and re-evaluate business procedures and tasks. This will allow your business to flourish and grow faster in the long run.
How to create a lasting brand
In order to create a lasting brand you need to implement the following 10 things:
1. Know your market
Before anything, you must have a good understanding of the market you are entering, your competitors, and where your company fits into the market. Know the demographics of the market and cater to the expectations and needs of those consumers. Recognise the moments where your competitors’ branding falls short and capitalise on them within your own branding.
2. Have a strong company ethos
Your company ethos is what sets you apart from other brands, and it sets the tone for your business’s overall operations. Consumers are actually investing in brands rather than products – meaning that they are directly purchasing your company culture.
3. Determine business goals
Set business goals and stick to them. In order to create a brand that lasts, you need to clearly define both short term and long term goals. However, it’s not enough to just set them. You should plan ways in which those goals can be achieved and communicate this plan to the rest of your business.
4. Be consistent
Customers need stability. While this doesn’t mean that you can’t change things in your business, you should consider the long term effects of your decisions. A consistent business language, voice, and tone are all vital aspects to consider when communicating with your customers.
5. Have a unique and distinct logo
Iconic logos, such as Nike, Google, and Virgin, are instantly recognisable and relatively simple. Your logo acts as the public symbol for your business, so you want to create a unique design that conveys your own distinct identity.
6. Maintain voice
Cater your voice to your customers’ preferences. Your audience should determine the type of jargon you use and the ways that you present information. Remember, customers like consistency. So once you determine your business’s voice, stick to it.
7. Stand out
If your brand is not offering something new to the market, it will ultimately fail. You should focus on making your brand stand out against competitors – whether that be through physical brand design or the customer service that accompanies your brand.
8. Be accessible
Your brand should be easily accessible for your customers. This could include accessibility to the actual product, or it could even include accessibility to the people making the product. Those building a business should make themselves accessible for general feedback. It will only benefit the brand in the long run.
9. Create credibility
Be a recognised expert. Businesses should want to be known as the best in the market. If you share your ideas widely and demonstrate your business’ credibility, you build trust between you and your customers.
If people don’t know about your business, it will never be an option for consumers. Build relationships with others and allow them to spread your ideas for you. Bounce ideas off people and demonstrate your business’s right to succeed in the marketplace.