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Digital Branding

4 Ways to Improve Your Web Design So You Connect With Your Audience

For any business, a website plays an increasingly important role in nurturing relationships and connecting with the intended audience. It is the face of your business which helps in making a lasting impression, resulting in improved sales and business. Similarly, a poorly designed website can translate into a loss of business due to poor engagement, recognition and recall.
Thereby, the need of a professional look and engaging website is greater than ever. With cut throat competition in the digital space, your professionally designed website can help foster relations with your audience.

Characteristics of a Professionally Designed Website

Your website is an important marketing tool, allowing you to promote your business. Thus, it is extremely important to strike a balance and make it visually appealing, user friendly and functional.
A strategically designed website makes use of attractive colours, easy navigation, responsive layout, content and visual elements that allow users to lure potential clientele. However, many businesses struggle with getting all these aspect in perfect synchrony. Thereby, here are a few ways through which you can improve your web design and connect with your intended audience.

1. Plan Smartly

If you have decided to build your website, you have already made an important decision that will help your business grow. However, the next important step is to plan smartly.
Planning your web design will ensure a visually appealing and responsive site. Before you actually translate your vision into reality, start working on the sitemap. It is a wise idea to see competitors and seek inspiration. However, coming up with a unique and interesting website is the goal of the exercise.

Once you have decided the template you would follow, the next step is to ponder on the flow of content and overall usability of the site. Your primary aim is to facilitate the visitor’s experience and make it easier for them to navigate across the platform.

2. Work with a Web Design Agency

Once you have a plan in mind, the next step is to take action. The planning phase is a comprehensive exercise to help you gauge the type of website you require. Once you have successfully done that, you will need the help of a professional web design agency.

Hiring a professional web design company will make it easier for you to design a website. Such a company will work alongside your business, translating your vision into reality. Moreover, working with professionals who have in-depth experience in web designing can allow you to experiment and come up with a design that stands out.

If you’re in search of reputable web designers in the UK, you may want to look at the services offered by the web design Manchester agency Design by Day. They’ve worked with the NHS and Manchester City FC and are highly recommended. You can explore their web design services here: https://www.designbyday.co.uk/.

3. Responsive Web Design

Once you have designed your website, the next thing to look at is its responsiveness. The primary goal of any business website is to engage the audience. Thereby, having a website that is responsive on mobile and other devices can bolster engagement.

Those businesses that work on the responsiveness of their website reap greater rewards with improved visitor and conversion rates. According to Google, websites that are not mobile responsive are likely to suffer from poor search rankings.
Responsiveness is one of the primary elements of a professional website. This way, you will not only get a website that looks great but is also easy to navigate and browse on different platforms and devices.

4. Digital marketing

It is important to make your website design search engine and social media optimised to reach a broader audience. To do so, you will be required to extend your reach beyond a web designer and look into Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Social Media Optimisation (SMO).

SEO and SMO are important aspects of digital marketing that focuses on creating high-quality content. Your digital marketing can help you create a buzz amidst the clutter. Thereby, it is important for you to come up with a comprehensive digital media strategy to rank better on search engines and social media platforms. The primary goal is to direct people to your website which is not possible without effective and strategic digital marketing.

Bottom Line

A good and professional website design is integral for the success of your website. If your web design is attractive, you will easily be able to engage your intended audience by providing them with a pleasant and enchanting experience.

Quality design leads to a higher recognition and recall, allowing visitors to revert back when needed. By improving your website design, you can give your business a substantial boost by opening newer horizons of growth.

Let social media aid your job search
Digital Branding

How to Use Social Media to Promote Yourself for Potential Employers

Social media is now an integral part of our lives. From marketing to job hunting, everything is based around social media in this contemporary era. While you use social media for entertainment and many other purposes, you can also leverage it to promote yourself for potential employers.

As per Brighton UK, almost 91% of employers admitted that they screen prospective employees via social media.

Potential employers usually skim through prospective employees’ social media presences to get to know everything about them before hiring them.

Here’s a guide that’ll assist you with branding and marketing yourself over social media.

Stay connected iwth social media

Stay Connected with the Industry

It is essential to learn about the dynamics and developments in your industry and social media is the best way to keep yourself updated about any developments related to your trade.

Also, you should follow the organizations and bodies in the industry of your trade.

Strengthen your Social Media Presence

To promote yourself in the best possible manner, you should strengthen your presence on the most noticeable social networks including Facebook and Twitter. You should create a decent page for yourself and get it verified from the respective authorities if possible.

Moreover, another handy platform to stay connected with your professional circle and promote yourself to potential employers in LinkedIn. You can make your CV available over there, build your network and follow the industry expert to keep up with everything.

Promote via Facebook

Facebook is the largest social networking platform out there with over 1.94 million monthly active users. The social network is a great platform to market yourself and promote yourself for potential employers. You can create, develop, and join professional circles over Facebook.

Promote via Twitter

Twitter is among the largest social networks. The reason why twitter would help you promote yourself to potential employers is that it hosts a highly engaged and an extremely active community. Moreover, the presence of professionals on twitter is also higher compared to any other social networks. Not only can you follow the most influential players in your industry, but can also promote yourself via influential, inspiring and informative tweets

Promote via Instagram

Instagram has been growing at an overwhelming rate over the past few years and has emerged as a marketing platform. Considering the dynamics of this social networking platform, it has now become an extremely effective platform for marketing and promoting your brand or even yourself.

Instagram is a great platform for personal branding. You can grow your Instagram and strengthen your professional profile to possibly promote yourself for potential employers.

Let your personality shine through on social medial

Manifest your Personality

Emotional intelligence is becoming an important and widely popular concept. As the concept of EI is considered more and more important while interviewing and hiring candidates, potential employers tend to check your emotional intelligence via your personality, interests, and habits. This makes it important to promote your personal interests and personality traits on social media, for potential employers.

Personal Branding

Branding yourself is perhaps that best way to exhibit your worth to the public and increase PR. You can establish your image as a leading player in your industry through effective branding. You can buy an inexpensive domain to create your own personal website, where you can manage a blog and provide information related to your trade.

Managing a blog is actually a great idea to market yourself on higher levels, making it easier for potential employers to notice you. You can use your blog to highlight your skills, experience, and abilities.

This will increase your credibility in front of potential employers.

Use Professional Email Signatures

Using professional email signatures is a great way for professionals and corporate firm to brand themselves via emails. These modern email signatures are almost electronic business cards. You can add brief information about yourself and your profession in your e-mail signatures. This way, you can promote yourself for potential employers.

In the contemporary era, an email signature is a part of your corporate identity. To market yourself and brand yourself in the most effective manner, you can design a professionally carved, brief yet informative email signature and attach it to all relevant emails.

For more information, click here.

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Digital Branding

The Morning Routine Of Successful Professionals

Do you catch the worm or chill away in the mornings?

Due to the nature of most jobs and the obvious challenges that come with them ( regardless if working from home or from the office), it seems everyone has a steady morning routine they follow.

But, not all of them are honing down on their routines to make them successful.

That’s why we are sharing how some very successful professionals are setting up their mornings for success.

You will see how these professionals get into the “zone”. These are habits that they incorporate and they work for them. You just might find that they will work for you too. Read through them. Tweak them and twists them. Make your own, unique routines. Create methods that get your creative juices flowing and then do them every day.

Every weekday morning I take a time out while I’m getting ready to drink my coffee. For just 10-15 minutes I enjoy that delicious cup of caffeine and catch up on the news with some morning newsletters, like the “New York Times Morning Briefing” and “Need to Know”. It’s a little me time before the rush of the workday!

Each morning I take a moment to remind myself that today is a brand new beginning. Whatever did or didn’t happen yesterday, last week, or last month is irrelevant — these next 24 hours are mine to create. So often throughout our lives, we wish we could press a do-over button, yet fail to recognize that each sunrise is life’s natural reset button, providing a fresh start to live the life we want.

My morning routine is often a juggle between getting my 3 girls ready for school and tackling a few client tasks before we head out to the bus stop. That just means my mornings are a tad crazy. I will usually schedule social media content or paste a blog post in some of the Facebook blogger support groups I’m in. I do NOT check email first thing in the morning; I save that for after school drop-off.

I start my day by trying to sleep for as long as possible to keep my 18th-month-old son sleeping. I then get up and change his diaper and get him cleaned up and clothed for the day. We then go downstairs and proceed to feed him the food my wife has prepared. We then play a little bit. After that, I try to respond to emails from parents from the studio and do studio business. We start teaching at around 3:30 pm most evenings. We finish lessons at 8:45 pm. That is a typical day for me.

  • Lindsay Burton  of Youngbway.com explains that sometimes a slow start is best:

I’m awful at getting out of bed after the first alarm so I usually lay in bed checking my emails and scrolling through Young Broadway’s and Kids on Tour’s social media feeds. We’re mainly a news website so I try to check first thing if news broke while I was sleeping. Then once I’m a little bit more awake I get dressed, do my hair and makeup, eat breakfast, then immediately start my work day with gathering articles, photos, and videos to post.

  • Sania Siddiqui of allthingsgud.com proves that some people go against the trends:

My day starts will a shrill alarm just when the sun is about to peep out. Involuntarily, I pick my phone. Yes, I am guilty of checking the notifications first thing in the morning while my eyes are still trying to adjust the focus of ‘light and life’! I know this is not healthy and fair but so are many other things in life. Five minutes later, I become this multitasker, superwoman with magical powers to finish off umpteen chores within an unrealistic time window of 35 minutes before I send my daughter off to school. A brisk walk of five km and I come back famished. Time for a hearty breakfast and to get ready for work!

Get outside! Morning sunlight will give your daytime energy a boost (and help you fall asleep at night). Not only does it balance your circadian rhythms (a body’s natural cycle impacted by many things from hormones to proteins to the rise and fall of the sun) but exposure to sunlight prevents melatonin release, which is what tells us to “go to sleep!”. So whether you check emails, enjoy coffee, work in the garden, take a run, read a book or sit in meditation be sure to do it outdoors. Get outside daily, as soon as the sun is up, and you’ll experience more energy and clarity throughout your life.

A key element of my morning routine is to have my phone programmed to avoid interruptions –no emails, no texts, basically, airplane mode — for the first hour I am awake. This little bit of uninterrupted “space” allows me to think through my day or get ideas without being bogged down by work before I’m even out of bed.  I also enjoy using that time to connect with my family without immediately jumping into texts, emails and being disconnected from real life.
Digital Branding

Six Ways Hiring a Business Coach Can Take your Company to the Next Level

When running your own business, it is important to take advantage of every resource available to you. Business coaching is a tool that can help you run your company at a much higher level. From your top level executives down to your lower level employees, business coaches can help your organization run much more smoothly. Here are six ways hiring a business coach can take your company to the next level. 

Business coaches can help you go outside your comfort zone 

Some entrepreneurs need help expanding themselves and their personalities. Online business owners can be especially introverted due to their lack of face to face communications. This can be very detrimental to a career as a business owner. However, a business coach can help you learn communication skills that can take your personality and business to a whole new level. The Everest Academy is a great example of a team of coaching professionals that can help you get out of your comfort zone

Have someone to be accountable to 

If you have ever tried to stick to a workout routine or diet, you will know that it is much easier to stay consistent when you have someone to stay accountable to. A business coach will act as an individual who will keep you accountable during your pathway to business success. They will help you set captivating goals and check on your progress toward those goals. 

Develop more self-confidence 

As a business owner, your self-confidence is key. You will not be able to take the proper action if you are not confident in your business. Business coaches train in the art of teaching self-confidence to their clients. 

Find someone who isn’t afraid of calling you out

There are many times that you can be operating inside of a bubble as a business owner. None of your employees will want to tell you that your ideas are bad. Your friends who look up to you as an entrepreneur may always be praising your new ideas simply because they admire the fact that you run your own company. A business coach will be able to tell you if an idea is a good or bad one. They will call you out on your mistakes and help you fix them. It is good to have someone on your team who will actually give you constructive criticism. 

Increase your productivity 

A business coach will be able to help you determine where you are wasting your time. This will be key to increasing your productivity. Everyone only has a certain time during the day in which they can get their work done. If you are effectively using this time, you will be much more productive with the growth of your business. 

Finally, increase your revenues, profits, and income 

After working with a business coach for an extended period of time, you will see that your revenues, profits, and income will increase. This will help you feel more accomplished in your business and make the expansions that you need.

social media management
Digital Branding

How to Keep Your Blog Active When Disconnected from the Internet

You work hard. You work long hours and you pour your heart and soul into your blog. There are times, however, when you just need to take a break from the internet. Whether you are moving and won’t have internet service set up for a period of time, or whether you’ve decided to take that well-earned vacation, you need to have the systems set up so that your blog stays active even when you are disconnected from the internet.

The key to keeping your blog active when you will be disconnected from the internet is automation. Before you disconnect from the internet, you need to take the time to set up the systems that your blog needs to remain active whilst you are not on the internet. Most of the tools you need to stay active are available to you for little or no cost, so there is no excuse for your blog to be inactive just because you are disconnected from the internet.

 

Schedule Your Emails

You are growing your email list, right? It can be difficult to see a return on the time you spend on social media, due to your social media following mainly consisting of family and friends. For every $1 spent, email marketing supposedly generates $38 in return. On the other hand, less than half of marketers agree that social media gives them any return on investment at all.” This is why people are noticing the importance of building a following over emails.

Many people are now using high converting plugins that have a range of tools helping them to build their customers and email lists, and I would strongly advise you to join them! A great plugin available is Optinmonster, they have a range of features from polite scroll boxes to mobile specific pop-ups that focus entirely on attracting more visitors, turning them into loyal customers.

All major email service providers have automation or scheduling capabilities. Spend some time before you disconnect to plan out the content of your emails and get them scheduled. Make sure your readers see you in their inbox regularly, even if you aren’t there hitting “send” each time.

 

Schedule Your Posts

Consistency in blogging is the key to increasing your traffic and growing your following. Just because you are taking a well-deserved and hard-earned break from the internet doesn’t mean that your blog should go silent.

Take some time before your break to plan out and write your content. Create your graphics and schedule your posts to go live as they normally would if you were there at your computer. WordPress offers you the ability to write and format your posts ahead of time, and then schedule your posts to go live for a particular day and time. Take advantage of this function to maintain your posting consistency.

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Keep creating content and make sure to maintain your consistency. Taking even a short period of time off, whether you let your readers know ahead of time or not, will hurt your traffic.

 

Schedule Your Social Media Shares and Posts

As you are creating new content, you should be taking the opportunity to share those new posts across your social media channels. But do you often remember to share your older posts as well? With hundreds of millions of tweets being sent in a day and Facebook algorithms that are showing your posts to fewer and fewer people, it is unlikely that the majority of your followers saw that time you originally shared your new blog post.

Share your older blog posts repeatedly across your social media accounts. You have new followers who haven’t had a chance to see that particular part of your content yet. You never know which of your posts will speak to a group of your readers and will get shared over and over. Do not limit your chances of a viral post by only sharing your blog posts once or twice across social media.

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If you are growing a community or working on increasing your visibility across social media, make sure to schedule your posts there as well. While announcing to your community that you will be disconnected is important, you can still maintain your presence online by pre-scheduling posts. Use free tools like Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule posts to your blog’s business page and any groups that you have started or manage.

If one of the ways you drive traffic to your blog is through share threads on social media, consider hiring a virtual assistant to handle those threads while you are disconnected. Your virtual assistant will be able to share your posts across different Facebook groups and will be able to properly reciprocate on your behalf, allowing your traffic to continue being directed to your blog.

Set up an Auto-Responder

You do not need to be spending time worried about your inbox while you are disconnected from the internet. Take a moment to set up an auto-responder that tells your readers who reach out to you that you will be away from the internet for a set amount of time and that you will address their questions or concerns when you get back.

 

Taking time off to disconnect does not need to be detrimental to your blog. Make the time before you disconnect to put systems into place that will allow you to remain active and show up consistently even when you are not at your computer. This will help your blog to grow even when you are unable to work on it direct

SEO strategies
Digital Branding

7 Basic SEO Rules You Can’t Afford to Forget

Search engine optimization is not as simple as it used to be a few years ago. However, one thing that has remained a constant throughout is valuable user experience. All search engines focus on providing high quality, useful and practical content to users. For big-money marketing, the focus of your SEO strategies should be entirely upon providing a worthy user experience, which is why you always need to keep upgrading your SEO techniques.

No matter how much you drill modern SEO techniques into your business practices, there is always room for improvement. If you’re completely clueless about where to start with SEO, this quick tutorial by Codeless should be able to put you in the right direction. When applying advanced SEO rules, there is a need to ensure that you do not skip some basic rules, including the following.

1.  Relevancy

Search engines demand relevant content from you. Initially, keywords were used to showcase relevancy to Google crawlers. However, Google algorithms have become more intelligent now. These crawlers not only check the keywords’ relevancy with the topic, but they also check the relevancy of one keyword with others before optimizing your content.

Google and other search engine optimize strictly niche-based content only. For example, orange is a fruit and a clothing line as well. Crawlers compare the keyword ‘orange’ with other keywords in the content to optimize it for an audience looking for clothes or fruit. Audience and niche relevant SEO strategy is the key to optimizing your content.

2. Site Speed

Site speed and bounce rates have always worked parallel to each other for optimizing your content. Fast loading speed of your site retains user interest and reduces the bounce rate. Google introduced Mobilegeddon to optimize mobile-friendly websites and prioritize these websites over others for SERPs.

Accelerated Mobile Page is another project of Google and Twitter, purposed to make fast mobile-friendly web pages. It is a condensed form of HTML used for developing web pages that are fast loading – the key purpose is to reduce the loading speed of a web page. Considering these facts, you cannot afford to ignore the speed of your web pages on any platforms, including desktop, laptop, mobile and tablets.

3. Internal Linking

Google has tightened its rules for external linking for white hat SEO. However, there is still some leeway when it comes to internal linking. Once you improve the site speed and reduce loading time to 2 seconds or less, the next step is to engage visitors.

Internal linking not only engages the visitors and keeps them on your website for a longer time, but also improves your site rankings. This is because it provides visitors with relevant reading options and increases optimization opportunities for your primary keywords. Also, it allows Google crawlers to fetch more information from your website and deem the content as trustworthy.

4. H1 Tags

During early SEO years, search engines started the research process from H1 tags. This process is still in effect. Although search engines crawlers use semantic indexing techniques to fetch content from your web pages, they still start from H1 tags. This simply means that to optimize your content, you should always start from a well-crafted H1 tag.

5. Consistency

If the bounce rate of a website equals the number of visitors arriving at your landing pages, Google crawlers automatically decrease your rankings. Similarly, if you update your web pages once in a blue moon, your web pages will be blacklisted after some time. Google translates consistency as an effort to keep your visitors updated, and counts it as a positive SEO practice.

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6.  Backlinking

We have always been told that the number of links on your website is equal to its rank on SERPs. Links can help build audience interest. However, if you put too many backlinks in your content, the audience may lose interest, resulting in increased bounce rate. Similarly, missing out on an important link can lead to reduced visitors. The right balance of quality and informative links in your content is necessary.

7. Size of Content

Around five years ago, Google considered a 300-word document long enough for optimizing your website. Today, semantic indexing techniques of SEO require longer copies to evaluate the quality of your content. The size of your content matters even if you dislike SEO rules, you cannot optimize your website without following them. Therefore, posts of around 800-word posts are necessary for making your content eligible for optimizing on SERPs.

Needless to say, it is important to ensure that you cater to all types of audiences. If your website is not optimized for mobile audiences, this is the right time to make it mobile-friendly.

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SaaS Branding

5 Tips for Building Web Presence on a Limited Budget

In today’s competitive online environment, building a powerful presence on the web is a critical step in achieving your business goals. In order to enhance your brand and increase visibility online, you must ensure that you are noticed and ranked highly by search engines. Regardless of how much you have to spend, the following tips can help you get started and begin driving the right traffic to your website.

Optimize For Your Audience

For many small businesses, investing in online advertising targeted directly at your preferred demographic is the most efficient way to increase revenue. Having a unique selling proposition is one of the most tried and true concepts in the marketing industry. It applies to online as well as conventional advertising. Make it clear that you are offering something that your competition cannot match!

audience

Having the correct key performance indicators is an important element of your tactical plan. Create a series of KPIs that is simple, easy to understand and directly related to an increase in your company’s bottom line. Pay attention to metrics that are performing especially well. For example, cost per conversion is often one of the most dynamic metrics for a growing business. Once you have identified the root causes of your most successful KPIs, you’ll be able to focus your energy more efficiently on enhancing your company’s performance.

Create a Budget for SEM

Paid search engine marketing methods are an essential component of your online marketing strategy. Following a budget for SEM allows you to take control over the keywords that will drive traffic. Depending on how much you decide to spend, your SEM budget can also dictate where your business appears within the search results.

One of the biggest advantages of SEM is that it allows you to determine the precise amount of money you are willing to spend. You can set your budget according to how much you wish to spend each day or for each click. You can even make a down payment that serves as credit, or you can use a prepaid credit card to pay as you go.

Start by researching the SEM programs offered by major search engines such as Yahoo, Google and Bing. They all provide SEM plans that are effective and easy to use. Next, write competitive ad copy that stands out from the crowd. Emphasize your strengths. Stress concepts such as free shipping, complimentary design services or unsurpassed inventory.

Gain the Right SEO Traffic

The best organic web traffic is free of charge, and you can achieve it through search engine optimization tactics. Begin by writing guest blogs for reliable sites that will direct blog readers back to your primary web presence. Existing sites in categories related to your niche are frequently looking for guest bloggers to lend them their expertise.

Your goal should be to establish yourself as an authority in your field. Once you have achieved that goal, demand for your guest blog posts will rise. To start, aim for publishing one guest blog post each month. As you pick up momentum, you will be able to leverage your extra traffic into new customers.

Create Fresh, Original Content

Keeping an eye on the latest big news items, reacting quickly, and writing insightful commentary can go a long way in gaining favorable spots on search engine results pages. Remember that Google’s algorithm favors fresh, original content.

tech-blogs

That means if you are among the first to post a clever reaction to a hot topic, you can attract a lot of extra web traffic. If your post inspires viral sharing and natural linking, you will benefit even more. According to industry experts, new traffic and engagement are two of the most significant factors that signal freshness to search engine algorithms.

Focus on Fast Mobile Speeds

According to Google, more than half of all search queries worldwide now originate from mobile devices. As a result, sites that load quickly on mobile devices and are easy to read on mobile devices are rewarded in search results. If your site loads slowly or is not mobile-friendly, you can be sure that your search results are not performing optimally. Update your site ASAP so it works efficiently on mobile devices.

Building a strong web presence won’t happen overnight – it takes time to cultivate, much like a flower garden or treasured bonsai. And the best part is you can gain the traffic your company needs to thrive on a budget big or small.  By using the right tools, a little creativity and a balanced approach, you can establish yourself online without breaking the bank.


Beth Kotz is a contributing writer to Credit.com. She specializes in covering financial advice for female entrepreneurs, college students and recent graduates. She earned a BA in Communications and Media from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois, where she continues to live and work.

brand-name
Digital Branding

Powerful Ways To Create A Brand Name That Really Thrives In A Competitive Industry

 

While the term ‘brand’ conjures up plenty of marketing-speak, let’s keep things simple by defining branding as it is → your brand is what tells your customer what to expect from you and how you’re different from the other businesses operating in the same industry.

However, branding itself is not easy. Looking at any industry, there are plenty of multi-billion-dollar businesses with near-infinite marketing budgets, and trying to build your business’s brand from scratch can seem like an impossibility. Yet, many small businesses continue to surprise us, by using clever tactics to set themselves apart.

Not every business is built with a brand new idea that’s never been executed on before. Chances are, your business has plenty of competition, and your product (or service) is just one more in a plethora of options available to your competition. Unless your brand name is strong, you’ll be lost in the crowd, and forced to compete only on price, before you eventually perish. To ensure your business stands a fighting chance, here are some tips on creating a brand name and brand that is successful.

Great Tips For Creating A Brand Name That Sells

Analyze Competitors + Keep It Simple

Before coming up with any name for your new business, it’s a good idea to first take a look at your largest competitor brand names. As an example, let’s take a look at the fast food industry. If you’re a new fast food business franchise you may have competition from:

  • McDonalds
  • Hungry Jacks
  • Red Rooster
  • Burger King

If you take a look at these names what do they all have in common? They’re simple and memorable names. Creating a new brand name should be something that’s memorable, easy to remember, and something that is one, two or three words long. Any longer than this and you risk being forgotten. Longer names tend to be hard to remember and can be tiresome to say. For example:

Mrs. Pickles Specialty Hot Pies

This could be shortened to

Mrs. Pickles Pies

As you can see the second brand name is easier to remember than the first one, thus is easier to remember for your potential customers. This is why some brands such as Ford, Toyota, Uber, Windows, Apple, and other one liners work extremely well because they’re easy to remember and they also offer great products or services as well.

Use Complimentary Wording

When using words together to create a strong brand name, it’s important to make sure they complement one another and it doesn’t feel awkward when saying the name. For example:

  • Awkward: Burger Sword
  • Complimentary: Burger King

If you look at many large brand names with multiple words, you’ll find some have one thing in common. They have a descriptive word, and a noun. Example of the fast food restaurants:

  • Hungry Jacks
  • Red Rooster

Hungry and red both are descriptive words that help to lift the noun and make it more memorable because it gives a visual picture in your customers head. When creating a brand name, depending on your overall industry, try to put nouns and descriptive words (adjectives) together and see what you can come up with that may help envision your dream business name.

Make Sure It Looks Good On Paper

Before finalizing your brand name, you also need to make sure it looks good on paper and as a domain name online. The idea of this is because it will be seen and printed many times, and it needs to look good with the initial design and layout. When considering the design and layout here’s some things to remember:

  • Use simple drawings and colours to help create a more memorable brand logo. Complex logos aren’t as memorable as the single word or simple drawing designs.
  • Make sure the brand name looks good if you wrapped it around merchandise or promotional products. While you may not start out with promotional products, you still need to make sure it looks good for future reference.
  • Will it look good on different media mediums: Eg: billboards, flyers, magazines, webpage etc.

Sounding good and looking good on paper are two separate things. This is why it’s so important to really draw out some logo design options to make sure you can create a name and design that will be remembered years from now.

3 Power Steps For Brand Success

Laying The Foundation

In order to build a brand after the name has been decided that not only finds its way to the top of your target audience’s minds, but also increases your bottom-line while keeping the competition at bay, you must remember that your brand is not just about your logo. Or what a nice office space you have. Or even how awesome your website is. In order to get started on building your brand’s presence in a competitive industry, you must have a clear understanding of your:

  • Brand – What is/are your product/services, organizational values, vision and mission?
  • Target Audience – Know your target market inside and out. In fact, the more information you have, the better. We might even suggest that you build a ‘customer persona’ so you know exactly whom you’re targeting.
  • Competition – What are they offering? How are they differentiating themselves? What are their marketing strategies? Again, be as thorough as possible with your research.

Once you have the above information, you’re in a strong position to start building a brand strategy. Remember, as simple and obvious as the above seems, many businesses skip this step in a hurry to get with the ‘shiny’ aspects of marketing.

Define Your Brand

The moment you try to be everything for everyone, you’ve lost the game. Using the information, you collected in the above step, you will have a clear idea of where your business stands, strengths, weaknesses and plenty of competitor-related information. Now it is time to take the following steps and clearly define your brand:

brand image

What are the one (or two) things you want your brand to be known for (e.g. Google – Search, Uber – convenient transport). This will also be your unique selling point. It can be awesome customer service (e.g. Zappos) or a revolutionary addition to an existing product

  • How will the above help you differentiate your brand from those of your competition?
  • What qualities and feelings do you want your customers to have when they think of your brand?

Marketing Communications

Now that you’ve built a solid foundation, it’s time to put pen to paper and get to work on the “face” of your business. Don’t hold back. Let your creative juices flow. Remember, no brand stands out by being conservative. Look at your competition and identify ways in which you can differentiate your brand. Now, it’s time to work on your logo and other marketing collaterals:

  • What colors do you wish to use, that will help show off the personality of your brand while also differentiating yourself from competing brands?
  • Design a memorable logo and keep in mind that you will be using it everywhere. So, try to minimize or eliminate complex designs.
  • Establish brand guidelines so that all your communications will be consistent with your branding
  • Design your website in line with your logo and brand colors
  • Ensure all your marketing material such as social media profiles, leaflets, advertising etc. are consistent with your brand

Many businesses jump to this step directly. Step 3 is only as strong as the effort you put into Steps 1 and 2.

Conclusion

The above steps will help you get started in the branding game and build a solid foundation based on which you can launch your marketing efforts. If you look at any industry, the brands that are killing it and truly setting themselves apart from the competition are the ones who have done their homework on their market, product offering and competition. They understand that a brand goes way beyond a sleek logo and flashy website.

What challenges have you faced when trying to differentiate your business from your competition?


Bill Sheikh – Owner/Founder

I am the founder of U-Thrive Marketing. U-Thrive Marketing is one of the premier online marketing and website design firms in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Myself and my company have helped hundreds of companies across the US put their business on the map online and offline. I specialize in generating customers for the businesses I work with by utilizing proven online marketing tactics such as SEO, PPC & Social Media. I have been personally featured on many national and local publications with features and articles related to online marketing.

brand-image
Digital Branding

How Social Media Can Scale Up or Down the Brand Image

Social media has developed as an integral part of our lives keeping us stick to our screens for hours connecting with people around the world. Which started as an entertainment tool, has now become the most powerful measure in brand promotion and marketing. It is pragmatic to start a business and make it known to others through social media marketing. While social media empowers businesses to increase their traffic, reach and leads, it can damage a brand image if not used properly.

Developing a brand image is important for making people aware of the product or service and enticing them towards that particular product or service range. Both small and large scale companies have been spending a huge amount of time and money on creating, retaining and improving their brand image.     Traditionally, the organizations have been able to control their brand image, to some extent, through their communications but the scenarios have changed and brands are now what other people say about them. The companies can only attempt to create a positive impression in the mind of the people with advertising and marketing campaigns.

Social media marketing plays a pivotal role in increasing brand visibility and communicating the message to the masses breaking the geographical boundaries to reach the audience worldwide. With every post, tweet, retweet, like, share and comment, people get a message about your brand.

The majority of the people use social networking sites to communicate and exchange their thoughts and opinion about anything. So obviously, if they have used your product or service, they will share their experience and give an opinion in this regards. Getting favorable comments and recommendations can have a positive impact on people’s perception of your brand.

social media

Unfortunately, if any of the users have a bad experience with your service or product, you can imagine how dangerous it can be for your brand image. So, make sure you remain honest and reliable while communicating anything about your brand. If you falsely represent your product or service, you will be liable for the damage to corporate image leading a downfall in sales and profitability.

How Social Media Makes Your Brand Image

Social media branding let you access more and more people to promote your company and top products/services. The continuous promotional happenings can develop the brand awareness in minds of your target audience, and whenever they would be in need to purchase a product, the memory of your product will click in their mind. Presenting your brand in an effective way before millions of people on social media can turn them into your potential customers.

Trust building

An effective social media marketing strategy enables you to create a vibrant communication portal between the corporate and the customers. It is highly recommended for the businesses to develop a healthy relationship with their customers staying connected and getting their feedback or suggestions for the successful operations and online reputation of the firm. If your customer base feels satisfied, they will favorably share more about your product that can attract more users to your website to get detailed information about it.

Increased traffic on your site

The social media campaign helps you attract more and more visitors to your website to attain certain business objectives. For instance, if you inform your social media followers about your newly launched product or unusual discounts via emails or newsletters and engage them in upcoming promotional plans, it will bring more traffic to your website giving a lift to your profit.

Better search engine ranking

The more people will visit your website, the higher search engine ranking your website will get. So, stay interesting and make sure your message convinces the reader to actively participate in your campaign. If the reader would find your message interesting, it will share it with other contacts and promote the campaign on its own level. Ultimately, the brand awareness will enhance and company will make more money.

How Social Media Can Break Your Brand Image

Here are a few social media marketing mistakes that can damage your brand image. Before reading them we would like you to have a look on traditional content marketing strategies which may cause discredit your content marketing.

 

Not responding appropriately to negative feedback

The worst mistake your social media manager can make is not responding to negative feedback appropriately. No matter how superb your product is or how diligently you are providing services, there would be some cases when you will have to face negative feedback. You can ignore it, or fight back with your customer. Whatever you choose will say a lot about your brand. Rather than ignoring or deleting these comments respond promptly and positively so you do not spoil your customer base.

Promoting your product too much

Though it is free to spread a message through social media, it does not mean that you keep pushing your marketing messages. If your target audience is getting annoyed of your continuous promotional posts, it can have a negative influence on your brand image. Post interesting and engaging content 80 percent of the time, and promote your brand 20 percent of the time.

Imperfect social media marketing strategy

When and how often you will post on your social media page? What will be your profile picture and cover photo? How will you respond to negative comments or feedback? How would you answer the frequently asked questions? Your social media strategy must have the answers to all these questions. A poorly planned strategy will leave you unresponsive before your furious customers that can definitely hurt your brand image.

Inefficient customer care

Customer care is more about turning a complaining customer into a fan by dealing them and managing their complaint properly. Sometimes a well-handled complaint is more useful for the business reputation that a good comment. Unfortunately, if your customer care service is not well trained there are probabilities that they can say something or make customer saying something negative about the business.

While social media enables you to communicate with more and more people worldwide for brand awareness, it also puts a burden on you to keep more populaces satisfied because a tiny comment can make or break your brand image.


Author Bio
Brooke is a tech geek and digital parenting expert. She manages content at www.theonespy.com. She writes mostly about latest technology news, product reviews, and social media norms. Her recently published article at TheOneSpy blog is wide social media presence.

work culture
Digital Branding

Creating A Workspace Culture With Your Employees In Mind

Is your workspace culture employee-oriented? Are your employees satisfied with their workspace? If you asked around your office how everyone feels about their surroundings, not every answer is going to be positive. The fact is that in these modern times, often people aren’t happy with the place they are working in.

If you don’t update the workspace or ignore providing your employees with benefits, this is certainly going to be true. In result, their productivity will downfall, and your business efforts will suffer. Therefore, it is essential that you create a workspace culture that focuses on your employees.

Have a mission and a vision

Do you know where your company is going? It is vital that you have a mission and a vision of your company’s state and future. Define what your business is about, where it’s heading, and why it’s there in the first place.

By doing this, you will create a kind of compass. It will help you know which moves are right and which are wrong. Everyone in your company needs to be aligned with this. By knowing your mission and vision, your workers can actually feel like they are a part of it. They will be able to contribute to it, and feel like their contribution matters.

Without it, you and everyone else will feel like they’re lost at sea.

Have office design in mind

Office design is one of the essential aspects of how your workers feel about their workspace, and it can boost or diminish their productivity. You don’t want to be looking for cheap solutions. You also don’t want to go for an overcrowded space where people feel like they are in a jam.

productivity tips

As an employer, you want to provide your workers with a place where they can feel comfortable doing their jobs. An important aspect of this is providing them with ergonomic furniture. You need to think about your employees’ health.

Encourage social interaction

It is essential to encourage social relations between your employees, as they are important for them to feel like they are a part of a team and therefore satisfied. You should focus on creating a workspace that promotes communication. You can arrange workstations in a way that employees can interact with each other.

Furthermore, don’t forget about office celebrations and birthdays. Even when there isn’t a particular reason to celebrate, call everyone for a lunch together. You can even promote socialization outside office hours via volunteer programs. This is a chance for people to build relationships outside the office.

Think about hygiene and cleanliness

Proper hygiene and cleanliness are vital for every workplace, and they boost your employees’ productivity and morale. Working at a messy office full of clutter isn’t something anyone wants to do. You need to have your office space carefully thought of, and look for good storage solutions to keep the only the items that are actually necessary in the office.

Next to that, the cafeteria needs to provide various choices of healthy food. You need to hire a reliable company to get rid of pests that might be an issue in your offices, such as cockroaches. You don’t want the workspace to be a health hazard.

Build trust with your employees

Your workers want to be treated like people and not like robots which are assigned to finish tasks. Every person wants to be acknowledged for what they have done. That is why it is important that you form a relationship with them that has trust as its foundation.

productivity

They want to know that you believe them to do their job, and to know that their efforts have some worth. While constructive criticism is occasionally necessary, you need to make every employee feel like they are worth your trust and that they are a part of your company.

In summation

Your employees are the cogs of the machine that is your business, so it is essential that you create a workspace culture that focuses on them. They need to be satisfied with their workplace and feel like they are a part of the team. You need to prioritize their health and encourage social activities, in order for them to bond together, and be more productive at work.