Debbie Allen

Article Summary:

Seven questions to developing your brand.

Developing Your Brand

Many businesses assume that customers know what they are all about. But how could that be? How can a customer know even an ounce of what you know about your business? It is your job to educate them both visually (with a logo) and verbally (with a short message that best describes your business and its benefits). You must offer prospective customers a reason to come into your business.

Example of how to use an effective verbal message: "We sell kitchen and bath fixtures" informs but it does not motivate action. Your catch praise or slogan and visual logo must jump out and grab them by their emotions. A branded slogan such as, "Our expertise is kitchen and bath accessories that transform your home into a palace" says much more about the uniqueness of your business and why a prospect should go there to check you out.

When Creating Your Brand Ask Yourself These 7 Questions:

1. What is my business and why is it different than my competitors?

2. Why are my products and services different and/or innovation?

3. How is my business unique and shamelessly special?

4. What USP sets me apart from my competition?

5. How can I demonstrate that my business is the best place to do business?

6. How can I build customer loyalty better than my competition?

7. Does my business have an identifiable logo and tag line that customers recognize?

The key to creating a strong icon or logo is to paint word pictures. Then compare the word or visual pictures with your description of your business and what sets it apart from the rest of the business world. Think unique, think independent step outside of your marketing mindset and get shamelessly creative.

Small Specialty Store to Worldwide Superstore
What began as a simple 800 square foot used bookstore in Ann Arbor MI, in 1971 is now Borders Books, with more than 2,000 book and music superstores, 900 Walden bookstores, and an international presence. When Borders opened its first international superstore, it wanted to start out on the right foot in an extremely competitive market by establishing a strong brand identity. They created a new logo, a stylized globe made of swirling lines that suggested both global presence and speed of movement.

Many big corporations started out as one small store. Starbuck's was one small coffee shop in Pike's Market, a popular tourist attraction in Seattle. With a unique concept in marketing they took coffee, as we knew it, and turned it into international fame and something we can no longer live without. Starbuck's concept was so effective it made coffee as popular as McDonald's hamburgers.

No matter what size your business is, BRANDING your uniqueness will move you far ahead of your competition. Never lose sight of what makes your business special, shameless promote your strengths and build a brand that targets your core customer base.

Debbie Allen is the award winning author of "Confessions of Shameless Self Promoters", and an international business speaker who has presented to thousands of people in nine countries around the world. She is a frequent guest on dozens of syndicated radio talk shows throughout US and Canada. Debbie has built and sold seven companies, and her sales and marketing expertise has been featured in dozens of national and international publications. Take her insightful free business card quiz and sign up for her informative newsletters at www.DebbieAllen.com

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