Marketing For Novices:
When taking into consideration your marketing strategy, you want to consider many things such as, demographics, location, price structure, and mediums on which you will use to advertise. As soon as you establish your key points that you want presented and your goals for your company or organization, you can then take each point and work on them one at a time.
Breaking down your marketing strategy into key points and working on those separately, makes it easier to accomplish your overall goals and strategy. If you try to only focus “big picture”, then there is a good chance that you could miss important details that could make or break your marketing strategy’s success.
Branding For the Novice:
When talking about branding, a lot of people tend to get the term confused or even mixed up with “marketing”. While these terms do coincide with each other at some level, they are very different from each other in terms of what you put in and get out of each. When you think of your favorite company or organization, there are probably a few things that come to mind before others.
Maybe a logo you liked, a great experience you had with that company, or their outstanding reputation, thus the primary reason you might enjoy them or their services so much. The point here is that all of those things are part of their brand, or how people perceive that company as a whole.
The idea behind branding is to leave a sort of footprint behind to your consumers, something that is memorable and will keep them coming back for more. Maybe as a company you offer services or products in a niche-type market that gives you an edge over any potential competition. Or maybe your specialty is that you make it a point to be very personable and polite to your customers and that in return helps build a lasting relationship with them.
To start, let’s lay out an example to better understand how the words differ in terms of a company. Take a company like Nike, with their ever popular “swoosh” symbol that people recognize around the globe.
They are known not only for the company’s logo itself, but also for their quality products, associations with major celebrities, and their edgy sports-themed commercials and ads on every platform. One might ask, how do so many people know and recognize the brand? Or who comes up with those creative commercials and ads posted up on the sides of the highways?
Well, here is where we can start to separate the two terms we’re talking about. When we speak of the perceived quality of Nike’s products, their great customer service, or their presence in the sports world, we would be referring to their brand. The brand is what makes people keep coming back to that product or service.
It is not the company itself, but how one perceives it. Yes, branding does stem from marketing strategy in part, but the brand is what makes people loyal to that business or organization. It is what people stick around for and keep coming back to. Marketing on the other hand is the vehicle we use to get this image of quality and trust from consumers.
Branding involves the tactics used to build a company’s image, such as putting together advertisements, conducting and producing commercials, or setting up displays in a storefront to draw customers in. Marketing includes the actions you take in order to build your brand.
When speaking about colour and your brand there are so many things to take into consideration. Everything from who your target audience is, to what type of service or product you are trying to sell, and even your geographical location.
The fact is, there is no exact answer for which colour you should use when marketing and branding your company. Colour is ultimately is a matter of an individuals personal preferences, their culture, or even their feelings at any specific point in time. Even with all of these barriers when it comes to colour, there are still a few things that can help decide how to go about choosing the right colours for your brand and business.
While there are certain colours that are more popular in branding and marketing your business, choice all comes down to what you want to be seen as. Many businesses implement colours such as blue because it is known to be associated with honesty and trust in the business world. Other well-known company picks for instance would be red due to it usually points to requiring an action to be taken. Red is a colour that draws attention and people tend to notice it versus other pale colours.
We can start at the most basic level. There are often certain preferences depending on gender. For example, when a baby is the topic on the table; a lot of people use either blue or pink to reveal the gender. When companies make very specific items for example power tools, they choose to not make the tools bright pink or purple, there is a reason for this.
The color choice is not because they won’t sell the tools, but ultimately the majority people buying the bulk of those tools seem to be male instead of a female. Companies know that sales may drop if they were to make that hot-pink hammer or glittery purple screwdriver. While this isn’t an absolute concrete way of picking a colour, it definitely gives some important insight into the topic. There are many other things that can help a company choose its colour scheme as well, for example what it is that they are actually trying to sell.
If you are an environmentally friendly company, you would probably consider colours like green and yellow, due to the fact that when people think of the environment or recycling, they associate it with these types of colours. If a company is based around selling hunting and fishing gear, they tend to use a lot of dark greens, brown, and black because those are common colours found in nature.
The point here is that the colours need to be aligned with what it is you want to be seen as or branded as. While there is no clear cut answer as to choosing colours for a company, these are definitely some key points to think about.
When using social media to market your company or organization, there are many factors that need to be considered. Some questions that are important to answer are, who you are marketing to, what are the best websites to take advantage of, what sites your competitors are using, and most importantly; if social media is the best way to market your company in the first place.
One thing to note is that before you ever start worrying about how to market your company via social media, you want to do your research first to figure out your branding strategy. Only after that, do you want to start working on the marketing aspect. With all of that being said, there are many options out there for marketing on social media sites.
And the best part about social media, is that usually it is free and easy to use. Many websites offer free tools to help build your company’s presence up, for example search engine options and the ability to list your website as a “featured” site.
Everyone these days is familiar with sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for their ability to connect friends and family. But as a business owner did you know these sites could be used as very powerful and influential marketing tools?
Sites like Facebook, offer businesses the option to set up official pages specifically designed to make it easier to find when searching for a company online.
They help make it easy for people to know what is “official” or not, as far as a company page by annotating the company name with a designated symbol. These websites also give options like being able to “boost” your webpage and make it easier for people to find, interact and connect with your company.
When using social media to market your business, it gives consumers an outlet to voice their comments and suggestions openly, and in turn; gives us as business owners the ability to immediately see and address those questions and comments.
The thing about social media, is that because it is so easily accessible to everyone, your marketing strategy needs to involve having someone keep up with your available content because forgetting to do so, can damage your company’s credibility and success online.
To sum it up, the benefits of what a company can get out of a good marketing strategy on a social media website, far outweigh the costs to do so. If your company does not have a strong web presence in today’s world, there is a good chance that business won’t last very long.
As talked about previously, branding is what consumers know you for. It is the image that your business presents, hopefully one of quality and trust. When using social media to project your company’s brand, you want to make sure your page follows the image you want people to remember. For the most part, your brand isn’t something that you set yourself. It is essentially an image of your company that is controlled by what the consumer sees.
Using social media sites is a great outlet to help enhance your company brand instead of re-create it. Once your company or organization has established itself, you can use these websites to further engage consumers and allow them to help spread the image as well. The best part about how this mechanism works, is that your followers and loyal customers are helping to put your brand out there simply because they enjoy what you do.
These social media outlets can very easily turn into a snowball effect. Where a few people tell a few others, and a few more, and eventually your company’s name and image is positioned around the internet all because you happened to use the correct websites and tools. When combined with a great marketing strategy, social media can help your brand prosper and grow very quickly.
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