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Branding: Growing Companies from the Ground Up

The early branding of a small or developing company is vital to its business success.  Doing this expresses what exactly your company has to offer. The inaccurate branding of a new business can increase the difficulty for the people to understand why the business exists in the first place. Companies that are just starting out along with small businesses tend to put branding in the backseat to the other aspects of a company such as funding and product development. Doing this is a mistake because a company’s brand is one of the key factors to its success. Dollar for dollar, it is just as crucial compared to any other beginning steps of a new or small business.

The brand your company creates in its face to the world. branding starts with the company name and how that name is expressed visually through a logo that portrays what the company is/does. A brand is also how your demographic customers look at your company then they associate an amount of inherent value on your business. A company’s brand is sort of like a secret promise. It is part of the fundamental principles that can be understood by any individual or company that comes into contact with your business.

Some people may ask “where” I put my brand out there or “how”. The secret is wherever you believe your company can portray themselves accurately. Small or startup businesses that have Social Medias need to also keep in mind that the brand of your business is everywhere. The importance of branding cannot be overlooked and has been proven time again that the success of a small or startup business can rely on its branding to help mature them. A business must stand behind while protecting your brand from outside sources or other companies.

Communication with customers and why.

They say the key to any good healthy relationship is communication. I could not agree more with this statement. Many of you may not look at the retail store owner to customer as a relationship but it most certainly is just that. Like any other relationship these also require time, effort and most importantly COMMUNICATION. It is far too easy for E-commerce store owners to silently hide behind the digital wall that is their website and not acknowledge a customer’s concerns. How many of you have had this scenario play out where the customer ordered a product through your website only to find out it is no longer in stock. This is a prime opportunity to reach out to a customer and see if you can help meet or possibly exceed their needs in another way. E-mail them or even better call them up. Thank them for their business and offer them a viable alternative. Maybe you will sell them something else and maybe you won’t. What is important here is you will be showing them a higher level of customer service than most see in dealing with web based businesses and you are building that relationship. In taking that little time out you will be giving the customer a positive view of yourself and your store. You will also be given the opportunity to showcase your knowledge of the products being sold in turn building that ever elusive customer confidence. This all goes a long ways the next time they are surfing the web looking to make their next purchase. I will go a step further on the topic. Let’s say you are late in delivering a package to a customer or for one reason or another it will not be there at all. Do not under any circumstances make your customer wonder what is going on and make them contact you as a result…trust me they will be upset with you at this point. The better mindset or approach is “bad news is still better than no news”. If you are proactive and contact the customer first and give them honest information you will serve yourself well in the ways of damage control. Things do go wrong or change from time to time and people understand that much better if you are upfront about it in the first place. Remember everyone has a voice on the internet these days and if you don’t communicate with your customers they will “communicate” about their experience on every social media, forum and blog outlet they can get their hands on. So speak up and reach out to your customers and let them know you care. Good communication can help preserve and grow your business to new heights.

Google+ Hangouts: Why you Need Them.

While most people have a basic understanding of social media — many of those choosing to use the dominating power — Facebook, the word of Google+ is slowly but surely spreading through the masses. Google+ offers users an all-encompassing experience that seems seamless and omniscient.  The interface is simple, sleek and efficient. While it appears that Google+ is only denting the traffic of Facebook users (only measuring to about 13% of the number of users compare to Facebook), it is now seeing the kind of results one would expect from a Google product.

One of the main reasons why Google+ will soon capture a wide audience is the hangout feature. This tool allows you to have video conferences with people in your circles, providing a service that many users adore. Families can convene online from coast to coast with ease. Shop owners can give presentations to customers outside of store hours, increasing brand loyalty and doing so in a way that doesn’t conflict with their busy schedules. Hangouts even allow users to share documents with Google Docs right within the confines of the chat.

If you have not yet developed a Google+ page for your business or even for yourself personally, you’re going to want to. Integrate this feature with your website and utilize the tools to build a brand image with Google. You can also integrate it fluidly with any other Google features that you are currently using. Google Places has even earned a spot, now being referred to as Google+ Local. It will be a way of sharing complete information about your company to the public, allowing them to share, review, rate and interact on a personal level with their networks.