The famous phrase, “perception is reality,” couldn’t be more true when it comes to branding. The perception of your brand’s product, service, values, and people can significantly affect consumer purchase behavior.
When an organization can foster positive perceptions from others, it’s more likely to build a growing and loyal customer base.
In this guide, we discuss practical branding tips to elevate your company image, which will, in turn, retain more customers, employees, and partners.
1. Offer Company Swag
Company swag is a highly underrated and affordable way to boost goodwill among others and elevate your company’s perception. These are promotional items and products often associated with your brand.
The beauty of company swag is that it can be given to anyone, such as employees, corporate clients and industry contacts, influencers, and customers. Gift-giving is a way to foster a positive experience for employees, increasing their engagement.
If you want to make company swag, the easy way is to find a company that prints custom products, such as The/Studio, and order a batch for your team. You simply upload your logo and choose the promotional item you’d like, such as hats, socks, beanies, or patches.
2. Develop Your Brand Position
Trying to please everyone won’t work when it comes to branding. You can’t be a budget-friendly brand and a high-end luxury company simultaneously. It’s best to identify your core audience and what resonates with them. Learning what your differentiates your brands from others through your core audience can be quite helpful.
Create a positioning statement that clearly differentiates your brand. For example, if you sell home accessories, you can tell others that you focus on building handmade products through sustainable practices. From there, your marketing efforts will speak to people who believe in environmentally-friendly initiatives or those who believe in highly-customized products made by true artisans.
3. Track Your Brand on Social and Search
Brand awareness and recognition are vital to having more loyal customers and charging a premium for your products or services. Your customer perception can differ between receiving instant trust or a hint of skepticism. It’s also the difference between attracting your ideal clients versus less desirable ones.
Developing a solid brand requires tracking key metrics to continuously receive feedback and learn the components driving your brand growth. You’ll want to start monitoring your brand perception online.
First, begin by tracking your social mentions. These social posts will reference your brand by tagging or mentioning your brand name. Social comments can be both positive and negative.
Sometimes, you can reshare positive mentions while developing a library of user-generated content. Social mentions can also be a form of crisis control, where customers complain about your product or service. You can manually search or receive alerts when someone tags your brand. The key is regularly auditing and responding to all mentions, showing customers you take your customer’s experience very seriously.
4. Commit to Outstanding Customer Service
Customer service is the heartbeat of your company. Bad experiences can spread like wildfire, sometimes causing irrecoverable damage. A poor customer experience can create compelling and viral content that can leave long-lasting impressions on your brand.
66% of customers believe valuing their time is the most critical aspect of their online shopping experience. Resolving customer questions and issues is the cornerstone of exceptional customer service. In addition to speed, customers want to feel more than just another ticket number.
Use a CRM to personalize your support by showing them that you understand their problem and can offer a tailored solution to help.
5. Invest in Company Culture
Customer perception isn’t the only vantage point of your brand. Consider the perception from employees, suppliers, vendors, and partners’ points of view. Start by gathering information from review sites from third-party sites to give you intel on what current and former employees think about your organization.
Now take feedback from your employees and other partners to identify why they continue to trust your company and the reasons they would consider leaving. This provides insights into how you can improve your existing relationships.
The key is to build a company culture around your brand identity. For example, Google purposely has a collegial culture, allowing workers to make their own decisions and problem-solve without constant micromanaging. Determine your company’s core values and build a brand to match them.
It’s without a doubt that brand recognition has a profound impact on sales and profits for any business. But branding is more than just a logo, visuals, and taglines. It’s about human connection.
95% of buying decisions are made subconsciously. That’s because emotions are the driving force to build a solid connection between you and whoever your brand touches. Building a strong brand that stands the test of time requires making a living a breathing element. This means creating a brand voice and mission and embodying those values when connecting with others.
When done right, your brand will have a lasting impression on your customers, making people want to associate with your company.