When I wonder about the power of a name and a powerful branding strategy, I think about those brands whose names have become more than just a name of a company. Whose names are now used as common verbs (Google), or whose names have replaced the generic term for an object (Kleenex vs. tissue, Band Aid vs. adhesive bandage).
Brand names are known for a reason.
Branding, defined as “Name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers…” by the American Marketing Association, is something that shouldn’t just be limited to major corporations.
Yes, we all recognize the iconic golden arches of McDonalds, and who doesn’t remember Kit Kat’s catchy jingle? But, even branding on a smaller scale to a more localized or niche market can still offer many benefits. For example, in the town that I grew up in, if you started to sing, “Get on the right track…” any baby boomer in the vicinity would immediately join in with “…to 9 mile and Mack” in reference to a local dealership’s very well known jingle.
The accounting aspect of a business may seem to be at the opposite end of the spectrum than creating a logo and developing a brand, but a powerful branding strategy can have a direct impact on the finances.
3 ways a powerful branding strategy can impact a small business’s finances
1. It will help you to find investors.
Your brand is more than just your name and logo. It’s not just the products you sell. Your brand is who you are, what your goals are, what you stand for, where you see the business going, who are you trying to help etc….
You know those people who are incredibly comfortable in their own skin? They know exactly who they are, and it’s hard not to be drawn to them. A company with a solid brand is like that.
Knowing who you are as a company will help to draw investors in, and it will also help them be willing to take a chance on you. Investors know that there is inherent risk when becoming financially involved with a new company, but that doesn’t mean that they want to take risks simply for the fun of it. A well branded company should ensure investors that the business knows its goals, knows its target audience, knows its voice, and has a plan for how it’s going to get where it wants to go.
2. It makes hiring good employees easier
It is no secret that the hiring process is a lengthy process and a costly one—especially if you do it right. In fact an Office Vibe study tells us that on average 27 working days are used to hire someone.
Finding the right employee can feel like looking for a needle in a haystack. Having a respected and trusted brand will make potential employees seek YOU out. When employees are familiar with your business and want to work with you, you will
a. not have to spend as much time seeking and recruiting employees
b. have access to more qualified and interested individuals
A two-way financial win.
3. It nurtures customer loyalty and generates new customers
Perhaps the most obvious way that a branding strategy can have a positive financial impact on your business is through gaining and retention of customers. Customer loyalty is tantamount to many business’s financial successes. The SaaS business paradigm in particular covets customer loyalty.
In an article for Forbes, branding expert Scott Goodson aptly points out, “People don’t have relationships with products, they are loyal to brands. In a movement strategy, brands have a purpose that people can get behind. Brands can inspire millions of people to join a community. Brands can rally people for or against something.”
No matter what kind of business you are in, having the same customers return again and again means income.
When people are satisfied with a brand they are often willing to pay the extra expense that a brand name brings with it. Think about Starbucks and Apple. You can find much cheaper coffee and much cheaper computers, but still the lines at Starbucks are often out the door and the Apple store looks like an ant colony with all of the Apple employees in their same colored t-shirts helping mass amounts of customers.
Customer loyalty also helps your business to grow. Because people that love certain brands, and have relationships with them, talk about it. They tweet about it, they post pictures on Instagram and hashtag their love for it. Maybe they ‘check in’ to the business’s location on Facebook so all of their friends can see. Your brand will help you to create a community. This word of mouth advertising generates new customers.
The brand is important, but you should remember that it can’t just be a façade. Behind your trendy logo, your catchy jingle, and your informative blog posts, there has to be a great product with great service. When you have a great product or service that you and your team believes in, that will show in your branding.
For more financial advice, contact Lucid Advisory and Finance!