The Importance of Online Business Branding

Branding can come in many forms and faces, but one thing is sure, it’s all around us. Whether your are shopping, watching TV or go online, everywhere we go these days we are influenced by the effects of branding. Most people aren’t even aware that our minds are gently influenced by clever marketing.

Everyone and I mean everyone has experienced the following in one form or another: you are at the grocery store to buy the families weekly groceries and at the last moment (you’re already in line to pay) you remember that you have forgotten to get the toilet paper your spouse asked you to bring. You rush back into to store (no time to look, you need to pick up the kids) and get a pack of toilet paper from the shelves.

I bet that pack was from a well known brand (not the one the family always take!)

That brand name you took was stuck in your sub-conscience, because of the hundreds of times you had seen their ad. This is exactly what the smart marketing people want. They show the ad a thousand times in the hope that the brand will stick in your mind.

Branding for Online Businesses

Building a business brand is not a one time process. It takes a lot of time to establish a business brand. Everything you (or don’t do) will influence your brand. As with offline businesses also online businesses should use the power of branding and brand-recognition.

There is not much difference between the two, besides the medium perhaps. Take a look:

  • Offline TV ads – Online YouTube ads
  • Offline Newspaper/Magazine ads – Adsense or banner ads (in all kind of different forms.)
  • Offline business logo on the wall – business logo on your website.
  • Offline logo on company newsletter – online a logo in an e-mail newsletter and on RSS feeds.
  • Nice business building offline – Online nice created graphics for your website.
  • Offline a well known CEO – Online a well known Blog owner.
  • Offline businesses are using online branding techniques and vice versa.

And these are just a few, there are many more!

Effective Brand Building Device

Your Web site or Blog can be the most effective brand-building device in your business arsenal. That’s because a Web site can do a much better job of building relationships than any other form of marketing communication with your customers. Below you’ll find some do and don’ts in online brand building:

  • True to Your Brand – Al lot of companies use so called “gimmick appeal” to attract more website visitors. These gimmicks can cause a brief spike in traffic but don’t deepen customer loyalty.
  • Relevant and Engaging – Web site visitors are not very interested in reading about your company structure or other internal information. Instead, you should focus on clear presented relevant information, such product info, product features, prices, resellers, etc. If you can do this in an engaging way, people will have a good feeling when they leave your site (these are the people that will return.)
  • Branded Interactive Value – A relevant web site falls under the larger concept of “branded interactive value.” Visitors want to know how your business is going to add value to their live, whether it’s professional or personal. For example there are many web sites that are using affiliate logos on their site. The business owner should make sure that these links are relevant to the sites content. If it is then it will strengthen the company’s brand. A good example of this is used by many computer content related websites. Many of them are placing a link to Getnetwise.org, which is a website that gives parents useful information about safe internet practices for kids.
  • Brand Relevant Sponsored Content – So called “sponsored content” will offer something of value to the websites visitors that are not directly related to your product or service. For example the Miller Brewing Company turned their long-term Super-Bowl sponsorship into “sponsored content” on superbowl.com. Of course the web site was about the Super bowl, but there was a lot of Miller’s brand imagery on that site and they received a lot of visitors, thus exposure for their brand!
  • Offline Enhancing Your Online Brand – There are many online businesses that are using offline methods to enhance their online brand. For example healthshop.com used runners dressed in healtshop.com outfits to hand out Vitamin C drinks. On the packages there was information printed about an online contest, of course in the hope to get the people to their web site. This is a good example of offline way to build brand awareness for an online company.

Conclusion

An online business owner should always be looking for ways to strengthen their company’s brand or to build on the brand awareness of their business, whether it’s online or offline. They should also remember that whatever they do or don’t will affect their business brand.

Feel free to comment below.

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