“Marketing is what you do; branding is what you are”.
As people are scurrying towards digitalisation and everything going online hence digital marketing and branding play a vital role in promoting your business.
Digital marketing encompasses all marketing efforts that use an electronic device or the internet. Businesses leverage digital channels such as search engines, social media, email, and their websites to connect with current and prospective customers.
Building a strong brand in the digital age is vital. Of course, branding has always been necessary, but when we consider the online environment and changing user behaviours, we can see the clear benefits of branding:
Branding is a tool for developing and maintaining a competitive advantage.
Online users are more autonomous than they ever were. Brands have less control over what is said about them online. The online customer relationship rarely ends with a sale.
We need to remember that branding is not only about your product or service.
Branding has always been about connectedness.
Digital marketing is infinitely more affordable than traditional offline marketing methods. An email or social media campaign, for example, can transmit a marketing message to consumers for the merest fraction of the cost of a TV ad or print campaign, and potentially reach a wider audience.
But one of the main benefits of conducting your marketing digitally is the ease with which results can be tracked and monitored. Rather than conducting expensive customer research, you can quickly view customer response rates and measure the success of your marketing campaign in real-time, enabling you to plan more effectively for the next one.
Which brand immediately strikes you when you think about instant noodles? Maggi? When you want to clean a wound? Dettol? When you want to search or “Google” something? Why is “coke” your first preference in aerated drinks? Do you often erroneously say “Let’s get a Xerox” instead of “Let’s get a photocopy”? What made me choose a set of products over their alternatives?
How did these brands position themselves? Did they enjoy a monopolistic market? Or was it pure luck? Seth Godin defines a brand as “a set of expectations, memories, stories, and relationships that in combination drive the decision to choose a particular company, product or service”. Business is built on customer relations, and brand perception sets the tone for the same. Essentially, a brand is an original mental creation which helps consumers understand a company over another.
Brand Perception- Creating a positive brand image is a combination of many factors including your visual presence, relevance, value, character, and ability to serve, move and engage people.
Start Right- To create a positive brand perception, we first need to understand what consumers think of our brand currently. How do they perceive it? Which adjective, situation, and product do people associate your brand with? Or do they even know it?
Current brand perception can be analysed through market surveys, customer interviews, and social media interaction. Once you have identified what customers feel about you, find the areas which do not meet your expectations (assuming you have a clear picture of what you want your brand to be perceived as).
Make active use of social media for regular posts, ads, videos, related content to catch attention. Additionally, maintain a file of positive feedback and testimonials to use in marketing campaigns.
Besides, if there is severe ignorance, you might consider Brand Awareness; the degree to which customers can recall or recognise the brand. It indicates the brand’s market performance. Research suggests that most customers remember a small set of brands when prompted with a product. This is what we call Top of Mind Awareness.
Consumers usually, purchase one of the top three brands in their recall set (known as Consideration Set). Therefore, it becomes imperative to increase the probability that consumers will include your brand in their consideration set. One way to achieve this is via Customer Education.
Start with educating customers about your domain, in general. Make use of blogs, videos, questionnaires and fun facts to keep the audience engaged.
Personalize customer communication and invest in a 24*7 customer support/chatbot service.
In the end, think about building relationships with your customer and not just creating another transaction.
Consequently, it is all in the name, indeed. Furthermore, what drives your name and reputation? Customer Service and User Experience! Create trust, relationship, and experience, not just a product!
The bottom line is, that the digital age has arrived and it’s time for those who have not yet adapted to the new way of marketing, to open themselves to the new way of interaction.
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