A Brand Is A Wonderful Thing For A Small Business To Grow

Posted on November 8, 2010. Filed under: Public Relations | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

George Orwell: no Orwellian tactics needed to achieve effective branding strategies

Image via Wikipedia

You’ve got a brand.

If you’re in business, you’ve got a brand.

How you interact with your audience says a lot about your brand.

Money In The Bank — Under Someone Else’s Name

A brand is earned equity. It’s what others think of you, your product, your company. Think of it as the capital that you’ve built up with your market – or are in the process of building up.

Because a brand exists in the minds of others, it’s essential that PR be involved in the brand development process. Why is that? People want stories, they want credible information, they want answers to questions about companies, such as:

  • Who are you?
  • What do you stand for?
  • What makes you unique?
  • Why do you do what you do?
  • How do I know I can trust you?

In terms of products, people want to know things like:

  • What does it do?
  • Can I trust it/rely on it?
  • Why is it better for me than what’s already available?
  • Why do I need this particular product?

Even more, today, people want to be able to engage with the brands in their lives, both work and personal. They don’t want to just be sold stuff. In fact, people simply won’t sit still for corporate monologists who only want to harangue them with their sales pitch until they buy, buy, buy. From them, of course.

Enter The New Normal Brand Conversation

People have choices. Their first choice, especially in this Great Recession-born “new normal” environment, is often not to buy. Unless they have convincing evidence, drawn from a variety of trusted sources, that what they are about to put their hard-earned money into is indeed a fair trade. Money for a product that delivers what the buyer expects. And if it does that, people may in fact be willing to continue to do business with you.

Building out the infrastructure of “trusted information sources,” that’s a role that PR can play in
your ongoing brand development process. Note the phrase “brand development process.” Brands are never static; think of them as being under continual development, in the minds of your customers. You don’t have to be an expert in mind control — like some marketer manque from George Orwell‘s dystopian novel, 1984 — to be an integral part of the process.

Fortunately you as the owner of, and steward of, the brand, can deploy your resources on the marketing and communications side to influence your customers’ brand perceptions. In fact, it is incumbent upon you as the brand producer, to respond to your market’s needs for information. The customer, after all, has a certain vested interest, in your brand as well. It’s up to you, the marketer, to nurture and grow that interest in ways that are harmonious for you and your customers alike.

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