February 18, 2013
Every business has a brand – is a brand – and this brand represents the values of the business and communicates that to its audience. As a professional you understand the value of a brand, so why is it that so many businesses drop the ball when it comes to their brand online? Because they are not asking themselves, “What do I want my brand to say about me?”
What is your brand?
Your online brand is extremely important, even more important than your brand on other channels. Why? Well because you brand is much more accessible online. Think about it, many people working for a company that doesn’t have physical locations nation (or world) wide, so the only way for the majority of your audience to experience you is through your online brand. But what is most important is making sure your brand is successful. But…
How do you tell?
There are a LOT of things to take into consideration when it comes to an online brand: Messaging, graphics, customer service, user names on social media channels, etc. We know it can be a lot of work to keep all of this in line, but I promise you it is worth it. Here are some characteristics of strong brands that you can use as benchmarks for your own online brand.
Strong Brands Are Consistent
No matter where you are online (or offline) you need to be consistent with your branding. When it’s the visual aspects such as a website, or a pamphlet the easier it is for people to identify you simply by your color scheme and logo, the better. When it comes to your messaging, you need to make sure that all of your online, and offline, messaging is consistent with the rest. Leave as little room as possible for customer confusion.
Strong Brands Are Present
Online, strong brands aren’t found on just Facebook and Twitter, they are everywhere. Now, they may not be as involved everywhere, but when it comes to things like SEO and reaching broader audiences, your successful names aren’t just sitting on Pinterest. It’s ok to be in a lot of places at once, just know which are your main channels how to communicate with these different audiences.
Strong Brands Are Transparent
Don’t be sneaky or secretive, no one has time for it anymore. Online you are on earned time, so the more value and trust you can establish, the better. Your audience will not stick around if they see you as faceless or impersonal. Show them your people, your community involvement, and other aspects of your organization that makes it more human.
Strong Brands Are Interactive
It’s not just enough to be online posting things, you have to interact with your audience as well. Strong brands build strong relationships with their audiences, because it’s their audience who will spread that brand around, effectively doing the work for you. Online you’re just another profile, but when you interact with your fans and build up those relationships, your brand becomes much, much more.
- 85% of consumers are searching for local businesses online.
- 82% of adults in the US use the internet, spending an average of 38.8 hours online a month.
- 92% of online users check email, 71% purchase products, 65% use social networks.
- 7 out of 10 consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Your online brand is an intricate and important part of your business’ success. Remember that through consistency, presence, transparency and engagement, you can grow your online brand into an awesome tool to communicate your values and bring in more customers.
I know it’s tempting to cut corners, but your online brand is definitely one area where you shouldn’t. With a professional branding team like eMerge, you have the opportunity to not only learn about strengthening your brand, but be able to execute your ideas quickly and effectively. To learn more about what eMerge can do for you, visit our website at www.easyemerge.com or give us a call at 888.639.9323.