“Branding” is a nebulous term for many business owners. After all, worrying about branding and marketing can be difficult when managing the day-in and day-out work of running a business.
Put simply, branding is any name, term, design, or symbol that may identify a seller’s goods/services distinctly from those of other sellers. So while it may not seem like it, the way you interact with your customers may already involve heavy branding, intentional or otherwise!
The end goal of effective branding is distinctiveness. Since many brands are selling the same or similar products or services to others nearby, it’s crucial to highlight both how you are different and why customers should turn to you for their needs.
To have a universally recognized brand, you must be able to differentiate yourself from other companies. The only way a company can compete with other products or services is to have a strong brand identity and a competitive advantage.
What is a Competitive Advantage?
To have a competitive advantage over other companies in your area, you simply need to possess any condition or circumstance that puts your company in a more favorable position. There are three main competitive advantages you’ll need to focus on: cost, product and service differentiation, and niche strategies.
The cost of a product drives consumers—and in turn, revenues—for businesses. A consumer’s buying debate is always related in part or in whole to costs. The task of the business is to appeal to the budgetary concerns of the customer, which will inherently increase sales long-term.
For example, a company such as Walmart has differentiated itself from competitors by offering low prices.
Differentiating yourself from other competitive brands may include a focus on quality, consistency, or both. As an example, one of the most reputable quick-service restaurant brands is Chick-fil-A. Although it may be a fast-food chain in direct competition to companies such as McDonald’s or Taco Bell, Chick-fil-A has been consistently seen as the most beloved fast-food chain in America.
Chick-fil-a’s brand differentiation is displayed through top-notch customer service, consistent food quality, and higher-end interior designs. These simple but effective methods are a few of the many ways Chick-fil-A defines itself from other fast-food restaurants.
Niche strategies can be conveyed through marketing. The water bottle industry is just one example of how a large market can leverage niche strategy.
Water bottle companies have evolved from general water marketing to specifically marketing luxury water bottles to millennials. Through marketing towards a more health-conscious group of individuals, water bottle companies have increased sales through niche strategy.
There are many ways a company may gain a competitive advantage and increase brand identity.
Some strategies may work better for certain firms, so it is recommended you speak with a marketing specialist for more information. If you are interested in differentiating your brand, book a free consultation with Franpos Here.