Branding isn’t easy. Some assume that it’s just slapping a logo onto a product and calling it a day, but so much more goes into creating a brand. A brand is a company or a person’s personality made marketable and/or tangible. When you create a new business and need to work on branding, you’re crafting a very human aspect of a business and then figuring out how that human aspect appeals to an audience.
Because branding takes experience to truly get right, new entrepreneurs can easily fall into branding traps and make rookie mistakes. Seasoned entrepreneurs can easily make branding mistakes, so how can newbies avoid these pratfalls?
The key to avoiding mistakes is knowing what they are. While branding holds a lot of mistakes specific to the brand in question, there are a variety of general mistakes that they should know about and avoid.
Going Over the Top
New entrepreneurs and small business owners have a tendency to want to go big or go home. Remember that when you’re first starting out with a business, this is your most vulnerable time — especially financially. It’s a good idea to be willing to invest a generous amount into your branding, but there’s a difference between spending a lot and creatively coming up with a lot.
A brand shouldn’t be complicated. Going all out and creating complicated branding schemas can be very detrimental to brand success, especially when the business in question is newer. Spend money, but spend money on something you think will work.
Some businesses have a very online presence, and that’s where they perform best. Online marketing and branding are very popular because they reach larger audiences and are often cheaper than non-digital options. However, this doesn’t mean non-digital options should be ignored.
If you have a business that has the potential to exist outside of the Internet, don’t let this possibility pass you by. Even if it’s something as simple as buying business cards with your business URL on them, invest in some sort of tangible, “IRL” branding mechanism.
Taking the Next Step
Many brands start out with a bang but end with a fizzle. Branding isn’t something that’s a one and done operation — it takes maintenance. Many early businesses make the mistake of considering branding to be something they do once and sprinkle throughout their marketing strategies, but this is completely inaccurate. Make sure to keep working with your branding, even after the initial brand launch.
Not Paying Attention to Analytics
Online branding is something that should be paid attention to in the context of analytics. If you send out a tweet that’s relevant to your branding strategy, assess how well that tweet is doing. How many interactions does it have? What’s the retweet to interaction ratio?
Paying attention to branding analytics is one of the easiest ways to tell whether or not what you’re doing is succeeding or failing miserably, or even somewhere in between. Whether you use free analytics resources provided by social media and Google, or you pay for your analytics tools, one thing is for certain — analytic data is necessary for branding success.