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Knowledge as a branding tool

Educating Your Target Market Is A Formidable & Effective Brand Awareness Tool

Building brands is important for longevity. Your brand, whether you actively invest in marketing or not, becomes recognised for something amongst your target market and the general public. Controlling that brand building process is brand positioning – a powerful tool when managed correctly.

Consumers who never buy your brand or never intend to purchase your product or service still recognise your brand as representing something – cheap, luxury, value for money, cool, trendy, fast – whatever! Influencing that to build a brand or a perception of a brand in the eye of your target market is the best approach to creating a positive impression of what you do, which contributes significantly to sustaining profitability.

Building a recognisable brand creates loyalty, which in turn makes customer acquisition less costly and less time consuming. In modern marketing, especially online, educating your audience about facts and trends relating to your area of expertise is a good way of distinguishing your brand from your target market. If you are recognised as an authority in your industry, visitors will return for more information.

They won’t all buy from you all of the time, but increasing numbers of returning visitors increases the sales opportunities and if these visitors respect your brand as a source of quality information, they will spread the word (offline and through social media) and effectively drive more visitors seeking quality information. Selling your competitive advantage to that growing audience is what converts more of these visitors into purchasers and doing so successfully will be a gradual process.

Modern Consumers Are Informed – So Be the Brand That Informs Them

Unless you sell a low cost, low involvement product, the likelihood is that a web user or prospective customer will conduct research before committing to a product or service. If you can’t provide the detail they are after, someone else will and the likelihood of them back-tracking to find your website and your product offering, after getting answers to their questions, is quite low.

The internet brings both direct and indirect competition closer together than ever before – on a local, national and international level, so establishing a brand which is recognised as better in some way is an ever present challenge.

The availability of information online affects every industry. If you look at the magazine industry in Australia, it has taken a pummeling in recent years – informed customers are looking online for cooking recipes, celebrity gossip (direct from the celeb on Twitter), tips on improving golf swing, DIY tips and more. So why pay $5-$10 a week or a month to find out what you can find for free? These magazines are no longer unique and informed customers know where to get the information online.

How to Position Your Brand As Unique

Brand positioning involves managing brand awareness and recognition. It’s best done from early on in the product life cycle, as it’s more difficult to reposition a brand once your target market and the general public have a perception of what it’s about.

If we refer back to the magazines, exclusivity is becoming an increasingly important driver of their uniqueness – celebrity wedding photos tend to capture huge sums of money because that kind of exclusivity is a means of differentiation that allows the magazines to succeed against online media.

Positioning your brand as unique involves adding value that nobody else is matching, whether on price, service, quality, speed, prestige, thought leadership or whatever other competitive advantage you may have. Knowledge sharing supports this.

If you make your target market aware of what represents genuine value in your industry, you’re effectively distinguishing your brand through thought-leadership (which implies quality and often prestige) and if a customer feels they are getting quality, value and good service, often speed and price become afterthoughts.

When jockeying for position in a very competitive marketplace and offering products or services that are quite similar to the competition in all aspects, then knowledge sharing provides an excellent means of increasing awareness of what is different about your brand and investing effort in being a source of quality information can be very rewarding.

Word of Mouth Is A Powerful Tool For Building A Brand Online

Word of mouth has always been an effective brand building tool – online its influence can be exponential, so embracing social media as a tool for brand building is a must for positioning your brand in the way you want it perceived. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and other forms of social media should be proactively used to promote your brand – it may take time but it will pay off.

Call 1300 650 274 to see how roi.com.au can help your business to develop a successful and sustainable online brand.