What does your brand mean to your target audience?
This is the second part of our ‘Activate Fierce Brand Loyalty’ blog post series. The first of which helps your brand to develop an awareness with your target audience.
This blog post follows on from the development of building awareness through your client asking,
“What are you?”
How can you differentiate yourself from your competition?
The concept of brand development is to be able to differentiate yourself from your competition. One of the pitfalls small businesses may fall into is focusing on promoting their service or product only. Your competition will be doing the exact same thing.
This becomes confusing for your potential client who is hearing the same thing from multiple businesses. Whether that potential client is in your local area or finds you through online searches and research.
This blog post provides guidelines to help develop a meaning to your target audience. This helps you to stand out from the crowd of business that provide similar services.
Once your target audience is aware of you, they feel inclined to learn more about you. There are two vital factors that communicate what your brand means to your target audience.
What can you do to meet your target audience’s needs?
Five performance based categories meet the needs of your target audience:
- Characteristics and features
- Durability or duration
- Serviceability (effectiveness and efficiency)
- Design and price
Potential clients will want to build on their awareness of your brand by trying to figure out important questions that define what you mean to them.
An example could be, ‘How effective will SME Needs strategic marketing plan be for my business in the short-term and long-term?’
Apply this line of questioning to your own business.
What factors of performance distinguish the service you provide for your target audience?
- How much more could I get done to grow my business if I entrust all my IT requirements to this business?
- In terms of efficiency, how productive can my project be if I engage with this consultancy firm?
- How cost effective would it be to invest in this specialised equipment and how long will it run smoothly for?
If your brand was a human, how would you be perceived?
Small businesses have personality in abundance!
This is something that you should capitalise in the way you communicate your brand’s image. This creates positive and strong associations and perceptions of your brand in the mind of the client.
Your target audience will form an image of you from their personal experiences with you, through targeted marketing or through word-of-mouth. As a small business, much of what image they will have of the brand will be associated with the personality traits of the owner.
Are you sincere and friendly? Spirited and imaginative? Or maybe you are reliable and hard-working?
As a small business, inject your brand culture into everything, from your logo, to your website, to the way you present yourself in meetings or at networking events.
At any touch-point with a potential or existing client, you should aim to have a consistent image you communicate. It is important to maintain your image and personality in both an online and offline setting.
An image is built over time. Therefore, it is about consistency in the way you push your brand’s meaning in your marketing message and communications.
Once you develop a positive brand image, the key values of your business will be reflected in the mind of the target client.
Your marketing communications and messaging transmits your key values. This applies to both a physical and digital setting.
An example could be SME Needs reflecting trustworthiness through meetings that are personal and specific to understand your business needs to develop a tailored marketing plan.
Through a combination of performance and imagery, you enhance the meaning you have to potential or existing clients.
This then helps to secure a sale or a deal as the client understands how you meet their needs and also develop a strong sense of the values and personality your brand has communicated to them.
If you want to learn further how you can identify and improve your marketing performance and build a positive brand image, SME Needs is ready to support you and is only one click-away.