Three Basics of Startup Branding
A vital step for any new business is its branding. Your logo, website, and domain name are foundational to your branding and, by extension, your success. On this framework, you build your identity as a business and communicate with your community. Taking time to research these basic tools helps you clarify who you are as a company, how you fit into the larger community, and how your business makes life better for your clients. Be diligent in establishing these three elements and you can reap benefits for the life of your business.
Your Logo Speaks
Your logo is more than just a cute symbol you slap on business cards. A well-crafted logo will communicate your brand identity to the world. Make sure your logo is speaking your precise message. The best logos not only make a strong first impression, but also convey their brand’s personality and values. The best logos build your brand credibility and establish familiarity over time. Design your logo with these goals foremost in your mind. Then, when it’s time to register your trademark (logo), conduct a logo/trademark search before submitting your application to the trademark office. This will save you time and heartache, ensuring you’re not infringing upon another company’s trademark with the same (or similar) logo design.
Your Strategic Website
Company websites have never been more important. Life in a pandemic increases tenfold the importance of a clean, logical website for your company. A well-executed website not only increases your company’s visibility and provides a forum for communicating with new and existing clients, it also provides you your own unrestricted space for marketing your company, your core values, and your unique offerings. Incorporate these strategies to maximize your success:
Always follow SEO (search engine optimization) best practices across your website to make it easy for customers to find you. A properly designed website will push your business to the top of search engine results pages (SERP), steering prospective clients to your business. The more visible you are online, the better you’ll be able to grow your customer base, your sales, and your business overall.
By providing e-mail addresses, telephone numbers, chats, and review space, you make it easy for buyers to communicate with you. With timely, specific responses to customer comments, you establish that your business cares about the user experience and is responsive to client feedback.
Include high-resolution photographs of your offerings along with engaging (and keyword dense) descriptions to make it easy for website visitors to see just what you offer and get additional information when they want it. Be sure to showcase positive media reviews and favorable customer feedback; this enhances your credibility.
The Name Game
Be strategic in choosing your domain name. Your domain name should be easy to remember and relate your business name and brand identity. It’s best if you use your business name as your domain name. For example, a business called Jim’s Home Cooking should have JimsHomeCooking.com as its domain name. Decide what name you want, then find out if it’s available. If some other business snagged the domain you want, you’ll want to try something different. Consider this, too, if another business has a domain name almost identical to yours. If TimsHomeCooking.com is established – especially if it’s in your market – step back and consider your options. Some business owners opt for keyword-dense domain names. In this case, you want to choose keywords that relate directly to your business. You may also wish to incorporate your location. The best domain names are short, memorable, and easy to pronounce.
Virtually everything about your brand can – and should! – reinforce your branding efforts. Remain consistent in your color palette, your typeface, your writing style, and your visuals. Determine the best “tone” for communicating with your target audience and use that tone in all your communications and marketing. When people see your logo, you want them to recognize all it stands for, including your values and overall brand concept.
These fundamentals get you off to a strong start in carving a place for yourself in a saturated and highly competitive marketplace. To find out more about startup marketing, accomplishing these goals, and other steps to ensure your success, contact us at The Profit Link, a small business support team based in Memphis, TN. We want to link your business to profit!