I get it. You have a logo, website, and perhaps even a shiny new business card. But there is a huge difference between a name and a brand.
If your business name isn’t earning you the following benefits, you don’t have a brand.
Does your business name sounds similar to all of your competitors? If it does, you have a naming problem. Customers need to recognize your name the first time they see or hear it…and every time. Then, they need to jump from hearing about you to finding you in a nano second. Distinguish yourself from the competition with a salient identity that sets you apart.
If you are not getting at least four referrals a month from your happy customers, then consider that maybe, they are not that happy. Granted, you may encounter the self-interested customer who loves the results you deliver, and wants to keep you all to themselves. They enjoy having what no one else has. Therefore, sharing your expertise would limit their perceived advantage over others. Aside from these misguided sorts, truly satisfied customers will want to see your business thrive. In addition, they will want to continue supporting your business and will encourage others to do the same.
3. Raving Fans
Wow your customers with an amazing brand experience, and they will love you for life. Apple is a great example of this. While other companies can deliver similar and even better products, Apple’s fan base is die-hard loyal to the brand. Remember, branding takes courage. You must put yourself out there and do it differently than your competitors. In addition to fans, you will have detractors, but don’t let that deter you from establishing a brand identity that sets you apart. If you don’t have naysayers, you don’t have a brand.
4. Social Influence
Is your name not only on everyone’s lips, but in their Facebook posts, Instagram accounts, and Twitter feeds? When others find out who you are and what you are doing, and that buzz creates positive influence, that is known as social influence. Given our current social environment, you can say that social influence is the new marketing. The positive buzz that your brand generates online or in person drives the beliefs and actions that keep your products and services relevant and top of mind.
If you concluded that you merely have a name and not a brand, NOW is the time to create a sizzling brand. Using this checklist, ask yourself if your brand has a:
- Strong Emotional Connection
- True Personality
- Distinctive DNA
- Consistent Method of Communication
If the answer to any of these questions is no, challenge yourself to make a plan for a strong brand building initiative. When you do, you’ll put yourself ahead of the competition and be on your way to gaining more name recognition, more fans, more buzz, and more business.
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