Marketing Your Biz
There is a world of difference between marketing and branding, but they work together for the
benefit of your company. In all honesty,
you can have one without the other but
your company would suffer. Before we
get too far into this, let me begin with
Branding is the character of your company. It is what customers see and recognize with your logo, your products, and
your company as a whole. To get a better
understanding of this, think of your
favorite restaurant. What do you expect
when you dine there?
* Great service?
* Fantastic food?
* Pleasing atmosphere and/or ambiance?
* Family friendly?
* Easy on the budget (or is it a more
formal restaurant that you frequent
on special occasions)?
The same can be said of your own business. What do customers expect from
your company when they purchase a
product or use your services?
* Top-notch products?
* Exceptional customer service?
* Unique products?
Or, consider these other brands—
McDonalds, Nike, Apple, Dell, etc. Your
customers’ experiences help to establish
your brand. It’s based on their experiences when they visit your store, purchase
your merchandise, or call with questions
or complaints. It is how your customers
are treated (or how they are perceived to
be treated) by you, your staff, or other
representatives of your company. If
they’ve had a great experience, consistent
product reliability, and quality customer
service, that is the branding of your company being imprinted on your customers’
minds. That is what you are striving for
with your brand. It truly is the character
of your company.
But what is marketing? Ah … that is
you pushing your name into the arena of
competition, whether it’s local or global.
Marketing involves your website, postcards, advertising, promotions, tweets,
posts, blogs, online sales, website SEO,
flyers, posters, sidewalk sales, etc.
It’s almost like a push-and-pull effect.
You push your name (marketing) into
the world and pull your customers in
with the quality of your products and
exceptional customer service. Marketing
brings in customers and branding creates
CoMBining The Two
Now that you know the difference
between marketing and branding, take
a good look at your own business. Are
there any ways you can improve your
branding? Do you need to work on
customer service? Does it take you a few
days to return a customer’s call or email?
Should you add more products to your
line? Consider creating an e-commerce
By Meredith Duke