7 Ways to Elevate Your Brand Positioning
It’s easier than ever to open a small business these days - and in a sea of products, services and small businesses opening all around us - a pretty logo and website just won’t open wallets these days. You need brand positioning with beauty AND brains. In a recent study by Lending Tree, they found that approximately 18.4% of new businesses in the U.S. fail in the first year. After five years, roughly 49.7% fail, and after 10 years, approximately 65.5% fail.
Does any of this sound familiar?
"People keep saying 'that's too expensive!'', but if I lower my prices anymore I won't survive."
"I can't seem to attract the right customers... only the people that want a deal or a freebie."
You are not alone. More than 75% of the new clients I meet share the same sentiment. What is my answer time and time again? "If you want to build a premium brand with lasting power, you have to elevate it in the minds of your audience."
Jay Baer, the author of What Great Brands Do That Good Brands Don't, said it best, “Branding is the art of aligning what you want people to think about your company with what they actually do think about your company.”
The perception your audience has of your brand is an essential factor to focus on to ensure your business’s success. With so many other companies likely offering similar products and services, the ways in which you interact with your customers, present your services and offer valuable information will differentiate you from the competition and reassure customers that they are making smart purchasing decisions or spending their time wisely by engaging with your brand.
Let's dive into my top 7 tips to elevate your brand and make it the premiere brand that's at the top of people's minds.
7 WAYS TO ELEVATE YOUR BRAND POSITIONING
1. Understand your audience
Have you ever wondered why certain brands seem to set themselves apart from the crowd while you're wondering how to get a few new followers? Ever wondered how you can differentiate your brand from the competition? How do you differentiate your brand from others already in the market?
By understanding your core audience and developing data-driven customer personas, you will be able to gather insight into the real problems, challenges, goals, pain points and interests of our customer base - allowing you to uncover important areas not being solved by your competition.
Do some research into who exactly your audience is. From the basics of who they are to what they do for fun, the music they listen to, all the way down to their hopes, fears, dreams and aspirations, you need to know and understand your audience inside and out - so that you can show up where, when and how they need you.
2. Know your competition
To build a premium brand, you first need to know what other options are out there and available for your potential customers - so that you can set yourself apart from them. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but... I'm about to be the bearer of bad news: YOU AREN'T THE ONLY ONE SELLING WHAT YOU'RE SELLING. But, you can be the only one that sells what you sell in the way that you sell it- but first- you need to know what other options are out there. This entails good old fashioned research and data-collecting. Here are some things to consider when conducting your research:
Who is your competition?
What is their main point of difference?
How do they communicate their differences?
Is their position unique?
Does their position add or take away value from their products or services?
Do they clearly communicate their solution?
Is their messaging consistent and structured?
Where are they falling short or not connecting with their audience?
Where are their products or services lacking?
How is their overall website experience?
Conduct in-depth research, find gaps in your industry where you can plug in different ideas to fill those gaps and set yourself apart from your competition- giving your audience a unique experience, which leads me to number 3.
3. Create a premium experience
To build a premium brand, you need to have a premium offer that delivers a premium experience for your customers. You should be making a positive impression every time you interact with your customers, creating top-notch experiences that will compel them to shop with you or engage with your content again.
Companies such as Apple have perfected this strategy – from the moment you step foot into an Apple store until the moment you activate your new Apple product, you are supported by a knowledgeable staff who guides you through the process. To implement a similar strategy, start by looking at your brand through your customers’ eyes and considering their first interaction with you. If you can provide your clients with an exceptional experience, exceptional service and go over-and-above with your services - FROM THE FIRST TIME THEY COME IN CONTACT WITH YOU TO THE MOMENT THEY RECEIVE YOUR PRODUCT OR SERVICE, AND INTO THE FUTURE - they will not only become returning customers, but they will promote you to others as well.
4. Maintain Consistency
In a 2022 study by Forbes Magazine, they found presenting a brand consistently across all platforms increased revenue by up to 23%. What does this tell us? That consumers gravitate towards brands that are easily recognizable.
Brand consistency ensures that your brand is easily recognizable across all channels and touchpoints, creating a cohesive brand identity and unified experience for your audience and customers.
Here are 3 ways you can keep your brand consistent:
Set brand guidelines. Create a set of clear rules and standards for your brand’s messaging and visuals. Set a standard for everything from your mission & vision, your brand’s voice & messaging, to your color palette and guidelines on how to use your logos.
Plan your marketing calendar. Planning your marketing ahead of time will give you a clear overview of everything you're doing and help you to stay consistent. Consider your blog, social channels and email marketing efforts - how can the three work together to create a consistent message?
Repurpose Content. Reusing content can help you to reinforce your message and reach an array of audiences with minimal effort on your part. Recycle existing blog posts and turn them into Pinterest pins, Instagram Reels, Facebook posts and an email marketing blast - all driving traffic to the post. Draw out bits and pieces of content to highlight some of the key takeaways and trickle out your posting schedule to make one blog post into two weeks of marketing materials - sharing a consistent message across all platforms.
5. Stick to Your Core Values
It's easier now than ever to start a small business! According to the Census Bureau, more than 4.4 million new small businesses were created in the U.S. alone in 2020- that's a 24.3% increase over 2019 and the highest total on record.
With so many new businesses hitting the market on the daily, it's hard to figure out which brands are legitimate and which are not. Mistrust is prevalent in the modern world, and consumers do not want to waste time, money, and energy engaging with brands that are inauthentic, untrustworthy, or unpredictable. While you want your brand to be constantly evolving, staying authentic and sticking to the core values that made your customers connect with you in the first place is key.
6. Promote user-generated content
User-generated content (UGC) is one of the most powerful forms of content any small business can utilize. UGC is any form of content- be it images, videos, text or audio- that has been previously posted by a user to social media- and is reposted to a brand's account. Rather than a brand or small business promoting itself, you now have customers promoting on the brand's behalf.
Some of the biggest key benefits of UGC is:
It allows you to maximize your brand's reach on social media with networks of people who may be unfamiliar with your brand.
It puts your customers at the forefront of your brand- making your brand more relatable.
It builds on your know, like and trust factor through real-life testimonials and user-experience.
In a recent study conducted by Everyone Social, they found that 84% of consumers say they trust peer recommendations above all other forms of advertising. Start incorporating images & videos that your customers have shared on their personal pages. Not only will this build trust in your brand, but it will make your existing customers feel valued and encourage them to continue promoting your products and content on their pages for the chance to be reposted, which is free advertising for you. Creating a custom hashtag for your customers to use is a great way to find pictures to repost.
7. Niche Down to Blow Up
A common mistake I see with SO MANY BRANDS these days is that they are trying to be everything and do everything for everyone. They jump on the on-trend train on the daily, trying to incorporate the latest, greatest everything into their brand- only to be sending mixed messages about what it is they ACTUALLY DO.
You need to get UBER clear in your brand's vision and mission, ideal audience and your differentiator - and use that to strategize exactly what products and offers align with your overall brand - and get rid of the rest.
Although the idea behind offering "a little bit of everything" seems like a good idea- in hindsight- the more you offer- the more you're watering down your expertise. I had a college professor who told our class...
"If you strive to be a jack-of-all-trades- you'll end up being a master of nothing." Sometimes, we have to niche down to blow up.
So declutter, streamline your offerings and be a master of those offerings so you can speak to the right audience 100% of the time and watch your business grow with less hustle.
These are just a few tried and true ways that you can start to elevate your brand experience and convey a high quality, luxury brand that will have people ready and willing to pay top dollar for everything you're selling. Ultimately, if you want to create and elevate your brand, you have to be willing to work at it each and every day, consistency is key and keep aiming high, and always be ready and willing to learn, pivot and grow.
I'd love to know if you've tried any of these or have other ideas or ways that you can elevate your brand. Leave a comment below or connect with me on Instagram @aerea.ny
Ready to take your branding to the next level? Let’s connect to see how I can partner with you to elevate your brand. Book a complimentary Discovery Call here and let’s chat!
So grateful and glad you're here!
"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart as working for the Lord, not for man." - Colossians 3:23