Branding for Profits
copyright 2002 Pavel Lenshin
General meaning of the Brand is quite abstract. In short,
brand is the image of your product, if we speak about
product branding and/or the image of your company if we deal
with corporate branding or, in case with one man business,
brand of personality.
Since the majority of online venture start-ups are
represented by small businesses, that are 101% online and
the life cycle of digital products is relatively short, it
is wise to unite these branding terms into one e-business
brand, that reflects market's viewpoint on your business as
an unique entity.
This viewpoint exists in peoples' minds whether they are
your competitors, clients, partners, friends or your own
employees. That is why your brand is psychological by its
nature, what creates new challenges as well as additional
Strong brand in the mind of a person generates honoring
feeling to your company/product or you as a company's "face".
Poor brand may represent negative impression about your
product or be the result of an absence of that impression,
and I should say that it is much more advantageous to offer
a new brand to the market, then try to do something with bad
image. Since we are dealing with psychology, it is clear
that good image and reputation is very hard to build, but it
is even harder to restore.
If you want to reach the heart of you customers' "likes" you
* Offer maximum quality no matter what you offer or do.
* Deliver pleasure.
* Be innovative.
* Address to people's emotions.
* Evoke desire and interest.
* Provoke active response.
* Build trust by repeated contacts as a foundation of
FACTORS that would STIMULATE and REINFORCE
-1. Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is number one passive
"brander" for your business, where you go UP (Unique
Proposition) the straight road of successful branding or
making your way through a very deep forest of competing with
other already established brands.
Suppose you have created new proposition, new kind of
service and if you have named it, for instance, "WebSky",
then all people would call it "WebSky", not "A service that
offers you 1. . 2. . 3.. and provides 1. 2.. 3.." It would
have a neutral brand from the very beginning, no need to
create, imagine or popularize it among hundreds of others.
Windows is a TM and great Brand for Operation System of
well-know software giant. Don't you think about what makes
us pronounce "Windows" instead of "Operational system" or
"OS"? The answer is simple - Windows occupies more then 60%
of OS market. Microsoft's OS in the informational society
plays the same role that would have played some imaginable
Oil Monopoly in the former industrial society. Hopefully
there is no oil monopoly but there is a monopoly of the
software "fuel" which is used by majority of computer
The idea behind Microsoft is also true with McDonalds, Coca
Cola or Mercedes-Benz and it is on the surface - they are
monopolies or, at least, oligopolies in their respective
markets with their respective strong USPs and therefore
So let us summarize this important fact - the more unique
your market offer is, the more unique, easy to remember and
easy to associate with your brand will be.
-2. The second thing is the size of your business in terms
of financial capacity and market share. Very few people
pointing to that fact, but its effect on your brand shouldn'
t be underestimated. No matter what product you offer to the
online market, it will surely lose the brand war, if your
marketing budget is $00.00 and your whole business is
located on some unknown unstable hosting as a result of
Everyone speaks about great brands like Coca Cola, but no
one actually says, that it makes absolutely no relation to
an entrepreneur, who wants to start his own small practice
Know your competition and develop the marketing strategy
that would reflect your business capacity, needs and suit a
marketing budget. The smaller your business is, the more
aggressive your branding should be. Branding has a feature
of building itself when your business is rapidly expanding.
-3. Corporate culture is another vital brand creator. The
epicenter of your brand is the company itself; therefore the
more positive and brighter the company "feels" inside, the
more positive, attractive and shiny it will look outside.
If your online venture's stuff numbers you and your cat :0)
you can easily build a delightful business culture but, to
my regret, it won't have a big influence on outside world.
What will have an effect is the popularizing of your
business values through partner networks and/or clients.
Friendly atmosphere that welcomes employees' or partners'
creative initiative with the focus on development of
personality, is exactly what makes a difference and lights a
"fire" in the eyes of every person your company deals with.
-4. Know your market. This small sentence comprises an
understanding of the needs of your market niche,
satisfaction of your market needs via directed promotional
campaigns, adopting the development plan in compliance with
analysis of the strength and weaknesses of your business as
well as closest competitors.
Don't devaluate your brand through wrong market approach.
People pay much more attention to their own needs as well as
to companies that satisfy their needs. The market offers
should be specific and directed to particular niche with its
unique problems, joys, hopes and needs. Don't try to shoot
several ducks with one shot.
Your branding campaign should reflect the market you are
working with in a clear and highly beneficial way to your
MAJOR WAYS of online branding:
1. All possible kinds of online promotion: banner
impressions, classified ads, solo ads, articles submission,
web-site traffic building, opt-in email campaigns,
promotional joint ventures, ezine publishing, viral
marketing. All these ways of branding positioning are to be
2. Expand your e-business network by running
3. Co-branding by means of strategic partnerships, joint
ventures with the established brands in non-competing
markets, for additional market and branding exposure.
4. Unique personal and/or corporate culture.
5. Informational and design representation of your business
6. The product/service itself. It is mainly through them
your clients acquiring positive or negative experience of
dealing with your company.
7. Domain name, design, logo, motto, TMs, SMs are the main
subsidiary representatives of your brand. That is why they
should be clear and supplement each other in conveying your
8. Testing and measuring the response rate of your branding
Why branding is so important? Because it, firstly, creates a
platform via loyal market surroundings for easy and quick
business growth; secondly, increases perceived value of your
whole company. Do you want your own company to develop
smoothly along with exponential growth of its market value?
About the Author
Pavel Lenshin is publisher and web-designer, who offers:
+ Powerful package on how to run Private Info Business
+ Free subscription to the unique NET Business Magazine
+ Free Optimization Report of your Website
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