Building a brand is undoubtedly a massive task. It takes a lot of work and innovation to brand a business with little investment. It is the most challenging component of any marketing plan since it requires a large team- often a branding agency– a lengthy process, and a myriad of components to get the desired results.
There are so many things to think about when you’re first commencing a business—and lots of unexpected costs along the way. Business branding can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be! You can develop elements of your branding, such as a prominent brand identity, tagline, logo, etc., on a budget.
This article discusses techniques to build a solid brand with more market domination at a reasonable cost.
What is Branding?
Branding refers to the process of giving a company its own unique personality in the customer’s eyes.
Your brand elements include your company’s name, logo, graphics and any other distinguishing characteristics. These elements will represent your products, differentiating them from other identical products in the marketplace.
Consumers will choose your brand over competitors if you have a strong brand that appeals to their emotions.
Since diverse audiences have varied preferences, you’ll see that many companies selling essentially the same products have differentiated themselves in order to draw particular demographics to their goods rather than those of other companies.
Soap brands are a good example of this. Because almost everyone buys soap, skincare manufacturers face a large audience as well as challenging competition.
There are a plethora of soap brands on the market. As a result, it’s critical for each of them to carve out their own niche and speak to their specific target audience in a manner that they’ll find compelling and safeguard their loyalty.
For example, Dove always markets itself as bold and visionary. They sell more than beauty – they encourage and empower their customers to reflect on self-esteem and self-acceptance.
Lux markets its collection as a premium beauty soap with a rich fragrance, and fine texture, but at a really affordable price. The branding of their products as premium yet affordable has gained Lux huge success in the mass market.
While Dettol is thought of as a more science-driven product for distinct skin needs. Each brand fulfils the need of a different type of audience, all of which use and buy soap.
The Importance of Branding
In addition to helping you acquire and retain customers at lower costs, a unique brand image can greatly improve your business by giving you a competitive edge over your rivals.
In eCommerce, a well-established brand can be a priceless asset to attracting customers and generating profitable revenue, where new companies and new competitors are emerging every day.
A brand is a crucial component of your business, no matter what your efforts are toward crafting one. It always exists despite how much time & effort you put into building it. Nevertheless, it may be completely different from how you intended it to be perceived.
That’s where branding agencies step in. They can help you create a unique bond with your customers by carefully crafting your brand through storytelling, strengthening your relationships, marketing messages and visual assets.
The difference between good branding and marketing is the former is strategic while the latter is tactical. By defining your brand promise and defining higher objectives, you can devise a marketing plan that focuses on those targets.
Here are some tips you can employ for cost-effective branding-
6 tips for branding on a budget
- Build a persona for your ideal customer
More than likely, you must have heard that the secret to crafting effective branding messages that hit home with your target group is to understand them well.
You can jot down everything on a “Client’s persona” document. Alternatively: You can assign them an identity. Throughout the remainder of the branding process, refer to your documents and keep your ideal client in mind.
A client persona helps you understand your ideal customer’s challenges and how your business can help solve them.
The following inquiries should be addressed in your ideal client profile:
- What is the person’s name, age, and residence?
- What grievances should you be aware of from their perspective? (Lagging websites, lacklustre visuals in apps, unable to call a customer service professional on the phone…)
- How is their standard of living being improved by your product?
- What do they hold dear?
- How will they make use of the item?
How you market your product or service depends on the demands, objectives, and habits of your target clients.
Understanding their goals helps you determine what kind of content your target group is consuming, what motivates them, and where they “spend most time” online.
Equipped with this knowledge, you can build an irresistible, influential, and elegant brand that reaches the right people and solves their problems.
- Create your Brand tone & personality
Your brand can begin to take shape after you’ve recognized your customer profile.
Develop your brand’s identity — what distinguishes your brand — as well as a voice, which represents the tone you use in all promotional copy and official communications.
Tone and voice are two major pillars of building a brand identity. To put it simply, the tone is how you express your personality, while voice is your brand’s personality.
Creating a brand’s voice and personality is similar to constructing your personas.
But instead of addressing your target audience, you’re addressing more introspective questions about your brand. In layman’s terms, you need to humanize your brand. What are your brand’s values? What does your brand represent? Most importantly, how do you want the masses to
perceive your brand?
Creating content that supports your answers to these questions will help you achieve your goal. Communicate your company’s mission, values, and desired image to your customers through email, blogs, social media posts, and multimedia.
For example, if one of your brand’s values is to be meticulous in everything you do, ensure that you convey the same with a “consistent” & “mature” tone throughout your social media and website.
- Leverage Social Media Platforms
Since, now that you have a clear picture of who your ideal customer is, as a result, the next step would engage them where they’re already gathered and active; social media platforms.
You’re likely to come across them on social networks, which is a great chance you must not forego. We’ve discussed how efficacious it is to engage customers where they already are, which encompasses their browsing habits.
According to a survey conducted by Sprout Social Index in 2020, it’s deduced that a whopping 89% of consumers follow their favourite brands on social media. And most likely, are their recurring customers.
The survey also reveals that individuals on social media want to learn about new services and products from brands. In essence, 57% of those surveyed stated it to be the primary reason they follow businesses on social sites.
Once you’re aware of what intrigues your target group, the very next step is to determine on which social media platform they invest the most time.
You can analyze your competitors’ social media accounts to decipher the kind of language and posts the audience most connects with. Furthermore, you can also analyze the demographic breakdown of every social media platform to understand your target audience in a better way.
If you discover that the vast bulk of your audience prefers one social network over another, you’ll know where to direct your efforts.
Per se, don’t overlook other social sites. When you develop a presence on various social media sites, you’ll have the chance to expand how you reach audiences.
Building your social media presence on multiple platforms will enable you to reach a vast and diverse amount of customers. Thus, enabling you to generate more fresh leads.
- Build Your Website
Build a consistent website using the colours, fonts, logo, voice, and other branding elements decided by you. One that perfectly depicts your brand.
While hiring a web developer can be helpful if your budget allows, it can also be quite expensive. Fortunately, there are lots of website builders that allow people with next-to-zero coding experience to create stunning, customized websites.
Identify which website builders will best suit your needs. Typically, the service costs between 8K and 20K per year. In most website builders, you have the option to choose from different levels of membership.
Packages with a higher price tag may include additional features such as additional pages, watermark removal, and access to more configuration tools.
- Cultivate a Mailing List
In addition to social media channels, email is widely used for marketing and branding. A global estimate of 4.1 billion email users was recorded by the end of 2021, making email the most commonly used digital communication tool.
Your social media posts can be reworked into mailers, so you don’t even have to create entirely new content. With just one click, you can instantly communicate with thousands of consumers.
Newsletter subscribers are more loyal customers unlike many followers on social media because they have consented to give you their email accounts in exchange for direct communication from you!
Today, there are numerous low-cost email marketing services available, such as MailChimp, Sendinblue, and MoEngage. Compare and discern their features to choose the best medium for your company.
You can easily keep your customers up-to-date with email marketing – no matter if you have a promotion or a new product. Use your mailing list to cultivate a close bond with customers and boost sales.
However, don’t use email marketing as a pretext to spam users because nobody likes it. Craft subject lines & headlines that’ll make people want to read your newsletter.
- Encourage customers to drop reviews
Doesn’t matter if you’re a startup or a prominent name in your industry, you must constantly fetch customer reviews to help you in your brand’s all-around improvement.
People nowadays skim through hundreds of reviews on google, quora, and other relevant sites. Although it’s almost impossible to please everyone, if a majority of your customers are happy with your product or service, it will instantly benefit your brand.
Once you’ve fulfilled their demand/order, use email marketing to send them an email requesting feedback, ratings, or reviews with links to relevant sites.
After a customer drops a review of your product/service, be sure to acknowledge them and address any complaints they may have. Never, ever ignore negative feedback.
When it comes to branding on a budget, keep in mind to be frugal with your spending. Striking the right balance between doing things yourself and employing a branding agency to save time is the key to cost-effective branding.
But, most importantly, have fun! Branding is your chance to communicate and demonstrate to others what you stand for.