When thinking of brands, you’ll usually think of big companies first, it’s human nature. Those companies with vast boardrooms and billion pound advertising budgets, when in fact, even the smallest of businesses has ‘a brand’.
Instead, try thinking about the last time you recommended a restaurant to a friend or an accountant to a business colleague. What did you recommend and why?
Brand is simply ‘reputation’ and the great thing about
reputation is that you can begin to affect it now.
There are three key elements to EVERY successful B2B brand, big or small, and today we’re going to look at what they are.
1. Differentiation or Disruption?
Do you stand out from the crowd? You can do this by associating colours or ‘characters’ with your brand. These associations then clearly define your brand in the mind of the customer.
The other option is ‘doing things differently’. Which is the approach taken by disruptor (or challenger) brands. This is just as effective and in many cases, more so.
What exactly does this mean? Well how about offering the first three months of your contracted services for free? Maybe you could offer £1000 cashback or perhaps free consumables with the first order of a product?
Taking the time to do things a little differently,
can really pay off.
It helps potential customers recognise you and more importantly, remember you when they are ready to buy.
This is commonly missed, but shouldn’t be. How relevant your message is to the needs of your target audience is key. How many brochures and websites start with ‘we have been providing excellent customer service for 20 years’ or ‘proud to be a family run company’ etc.?
B2B customers are usually looking for a supplier
who can help them solve a particular problem.
Instead, messages such as ‘guaranteed 20 minute emergency response time’ are far more compelling for a plumber to lead with than ‘trading since 1982’.
Think about what your customers want and make align your brand messages to this.
This is possibly the most important point. New customers are often wary about buying from a new supplier, no one likes making a mistake, especially when they cost money.
To remove this nervousness you can use review sites (if possible), have case studies and testimonials close to hand, and ask customers if they would be happy to talk to potential new customers on your behalf.
Building a brand is hard work and needs consistent
delivery of your key messages, but the rewards
are loyal customers who are easier to acquire.
So, when you next have some free time look at how your company’s brand handles these three B2B brand requirements and you’ll be on your way to building a successful brand.