Branding For Profits

Who Are You?

Do you warm up your audience with a branding for profits strategy - before your first sales call? Think about this from a buyer’s perspective. Whether it’s a call from a salesman or you’re walking by a booth at a trade show, during that instant of initial contact there’s a good chance you’re thinking, "who is this company and why should I care?"

We’ve all had the challenge of facing a customer for the first time that is skeptical. It sure would be nice to walk through their door and have them happy to see you during that first visit. That will happen when you create marketing branding strategies when you look at your audience in human terms. You’ll have a distinct edge over your competitors and sales will fly high.

But how do you make this happen? It’s more than creating a wonderful logo and tagline that communicates your value - what your company is all about - but that’s part of it. You need both a well-developed "personality" and a way to pre-sell or warm up your target audience.

The trick is to begin promoting yourself before you walk through the prospect’s door.

Competitive Edge Dynamics

Many years ago the McGraw-Hill Publishing Company wanted to sell more advertising in their magazines and came out with an ad focused on marketers. The message was simple and incredibly effective. There was a photo of a grumpy looking man and only these words:

I don't know who you are.

I don't know your company.

I don't know your company's product.

I don't know what your company stands for.

I don't know your company's customers.

I don't know your company's record.

I don't know your company's reputation.

Now - what was it you wanted to sell me?

This is what you’re up against! There are many benefits of branding for profits. But high on the list is creating a positive image in the mind of your prospect – ahead of your first meeting.

The original intent of this ad was to support the need to strengthen brand awareness and establish a brand personality - before the sale - using traditional advertising. In today’s world, to be successful you have to take this one step further. With all the noise from the Web, email, and competition, branding for profits requires a marketing branding strategies action plan, your building blocks of competitive advantage.

Why Should I Bother Listening To You?

There are many concrete steps to take no matter your industry, what type of product or service your sell, or how complex your marketing cycle is. The following ideas are easy to implement - and low cost too! These will help you to have an answer to: "Why should I take a risk and spend part of my budget with you?"

  • Write a sourcebook - this is one of my favorite ways to become noticed in a crowded market and should be a key piece of your branding for profits strategy. This will help you become the go-to experts with your audience. Every sourcebook I’ve worked on was well received by customers, analysts, and the media as informative primers. Title it something like "Plain Answers About ________". Make it objective and educational, but place your company’s name on every page and make sure you include an "About" section on your company. It doesn’t have to be long, but must be meaty. And make sure you put a price on the front cover even though you’ll give it away! A sourcebook will light up your brand image and position you as an innovator and market leader;
  • Write articles and whitepapers - Submit these to trade publications, your local newspaper, and to online article distribution sites. Writing always establishes you as an expert and builds name recognition;
  • Tip sheets - One page tidbits of information on a variety of subjects such as how to get more out of your product or service or educate your audience on a common issue in your industry. If possible come out with a series of these, which people will look forward to;
  • Blogs - similar to articles, whitepapers, and tip sheets but with the added benefit of allowing the reader to interact and comment. Also a great way to let your audience know about your new sourcebook, tip sheet, or a deal you just closed;
  • Speak – Ask groups that your customers associate with to speak at their functions. They are always looking for informative experts to keep their members up to date. Sometimes you’ll need to become a sponsor to do this, and pay to play;
  • Press Releases - One of the easiest and most cost effective ways to get your name out there. Make it real news of interest to your audience - your new sourcebook, a new employee, big win - and always tie the release to a problem and how you solve it. Place them on your website and make copies available to sales people. A great way to demonstrate your expertise and experience.

Before you create a marketing branding strategies think about the competitive edge dynamics you’d like to achieve. You’ll reap the benefits of branding for profits by building this mindset into your daily activities. Make your company familiar and respected and that recognition will help to build sales.

That’s the power of branding for profits.

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