As a savvy entrepreneur or small business owner, your success hinges on a stand-out brand, backed by the ability to deliver results. But in an increasingly crowded market, even thriving businesses find themselves struggling to be seen a high-value, go-to source for prospects and customers.
It’s not enough to simply tell people about your business and what you stand for. You must set your brand apart from a dizzying array of choices by delivering exceptional value, consistently.
Put three building blocks in place now to raise your small business brand to a more prominent position in your customer’s world—think A, B, C:
- Show up authentically as the authority, providing content perceived as useful and valuable
- Maintain a bold presence in the right mix of marketing channels
- Have a clear message that rolls out the red carpet and leads prospects along a clear path
Let’s take a closer look at these foundational pieces to a winning small business brand positioning strategy.
1. Be the Authority, Authentically.
To become the go-to source for customers and be seen as a thought leader, master the know-like-trust factor. In business, as in life, trust must be earned, and the number one way to build trust is to lead with compelling content.
What value can you provide? How can you serve before you jump into a sales conversation? What sets you apart? What is the difference you deliver?
Building brand authority through authentic service
Begin with a focus on high-value content tied to a clear customer benefit. Share what you know, with authority, aiming for the perfect blend of conversational and actionable content where possible.
Questions to consider:
- What’s the thing you know inside and out that competitors can’t speak to in the way you can?
- How can you help customers and prospects avoid pitfalls and find success?
- How can you earn customer loyalty by providing something unexpected?
To build brand equity lead with authenticity and service.
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2. Bold Presence Across Multiple Platforms.
You know you need to show up authentically, but where should you start? With more than 30 million small businesses in the US, there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy. But no matter what industry you’re in, it’s essential to show up where your customers are. A diversified mix of channels, beginning by building a strong presence on one or two channels will strengthen your positioning and help drive engagement.
The best places for small businesses to show up big
Social media provides a responsive platform that allows you to extend your reach and respond to in-the-moment requests. A stunning 65% of consumers are more likely to buy from brands they follow on social media.
Instant metrics in the form of likes and engagement are indicators of what content prospects most appreciate. From YouTube to LinkedIn, Facebook lives to your Instagram feed, the right social media mix can give your small business a much bigger impact. In today’s environment, customers expect access and added value, so be sure to do more than simply post updates. Brands that post a mix of promotions, informational content, and exclusive deals are most likely to see a translation to sales.
Consistent brand messaging across channels naturally supports stronger customer relationships. Think of your blog and email newsletter as cornerstone content that supports social strategy and other forms of outreach. Choose your communication channels wisely, then establish a consistent presence. Listen and learn in addition to what you share authoritatively and authentically.
3. Connect Prospects to a Clear Path.
Shaping a standout brand that’s memorable and engaging is about more than what tool you use or what offer you extend. Ultimately, it’s your message that matters. We’re not talking enticing taglines or SEO keywords. Those are important, but the critical core is the clarity and conviction of your message.
Are you being clear in your communication?
When you craft an e-mail or post on social media, choose a single focus. What is the one action or specific step you want your audience to take now? Why does that matter to them?
Does your message highlight a clear path for customers?
With a clarion call to action and engagement in place, consider the broader path. How exactly will you help prospects? Do they know what they need to do that will move them toward where they want to be? Do they understand how your small business is uniquely positioned to help them at this stage of their journey?
The more you clarify the steps along the path to solving their current challenge or fulfilling their wishes, dreams and desires, the more valuable you become. This is how you will differentiate your small business brand and rise to the top in a sea of competing options and choices.