Local Branding Can Trump National Competitors

The best thing you can do is ensure you have the following:

    ▪▪ An accurate, up-to-date portrayal online of what you are offering.
    ▪▪ A digital exposure via company website, blog and social media channels.
    ▪▪ An integrated branding that exists across all mediums.

It’s the last point where a great many businesses flop. Your business needs to put its best face forward at all times. The reputation of your capabilities rests on it. So if you have a recent brand redesign (visually impressive and that clearly conveys your business) but you fail to integrate it across the board, you will be shooting yourself in the foot.

The central business goal of branding is to build trust and that requires attention to detail and persistence. You need to present the same high quality in every interaction and at every turn. Clients will be confused if they sign up for a service online through an awesome website but then see your outdated brochure in the initial meeting.

COMMUNITY IMPACT

There’s no better way to outshine the big-budget competition than with some good old-fashioned community outreach. Being a small business or contractor, you are most likely already involved with a few separate spheres of influence, which may include:

    ▪▪ Local business groups or forums
    ▪▪ PTA or local athletic leagues
    ▪▪ Parish or local religious communities
    ▪▪ Public library or other municipality organizations
    ▪▪ VFW or local military organizations
    ▪▪ Health and wellness centers or fitness community

It’s time for you to make the most of those connections. Hidden within these different areas of the community are a slew of opportunities that your business can most definitely aid. It could be something as simple as a monetary donation or something as engaging as a hands-on DIY demonstration.

Start building those relationships if you haven’t yet, offer up your services and start leveraging these local opportunities. This is a key way to get referrals, but more so to get dedicated customers who support your brand. Help out local causes and demonstrate how your brand truly cares about the community.

Once you start getting involved, bring those efforts to the surface through social media, email newsletters and on your website. Communicate on a consistent basis and don’t waste the chance to really do some good. A pillar of social media rests on sharing some inspirational, good-natured content. Do your best to get behind something your business believes in and you’re bound to see results.

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER

Today’s interconnected world definitely puts small businesses in the driver seat—in pole position. Once you realize that investing in a professional branding effort across your marketing mix is the winning ticket, there’s no limit to your growth potential.

Every company has two options: evolve to beat out the competition or suffer at the hands of those that do. There are only so many setbacks you can suffer before you’re borderline bankrupt, especially in today’s economy. And those large-scale corporations have dozens of teams working to steal your customers away.

Don’t wait for the perfect timing. Take the necessary steps to start building a local rockstar of a brand.

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About Dan Antonelli

Dan Antonelli is CEO and creative director of Graphic D-Signs Inc., a Washington, N.J.-based award-winning advertising agency that works with small- and mid-size businesses all over the world to help them trump national competitors.

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