Building brand awareness and keeping your business at the forefront of your customers’ minds can be tough. Whether you are a new start-up business, or have a small business with a few employees and want to get more exposure, marketing takes work. Being a small business, you will most likely have a small budget for marketing, somewhat restricting what you can do to get your name out there.
This is where it pays to start being creative. Small businesses all over the world have over the years affordably been able to market their business, increase brand exposure and build up their client or customer base.
How to Build Brand Awareness for Your Small Business
From simple digital marketing ideas to creative out-of-the-box strategies, these brand awareness building ideas will certainly get you on your customers’ map.
Branded Corporate Gifts for Potential Clients
Let’s face it, almost everyone likes getting free things. Corporate gifts have been around for decades because they work. Branded gifts keep your company top-of-mind every time your customer uses the gift.
When deciding what type of gift to offer, try and align it to your business offering. For example, a pet food and accessory retailer could give away items like branded water bowls or leashes.
SnackNation put together a substantial list of gift ideas you can explore for your company to build brand awareness. We loved the chargers or power bank ideas, as well as branded headphones. These can be gifts with logos for everyday use or special items that your customers wouldn’t actually buy themselves.
Sponsored WiFi in a Public Area
Who can live without WiFi these days? Even when you are out and about it helps to be connected to the online world. A number of companies have seen this as a great opportunity to help those on the move connect for free, while at the same time promoting their brand.
You can opt to sponsor public transport systems like a bus, train or taxi in your area, or even perhaps a local restaurant. Try and find something with high foot traffic for even more exposure. You can build brand awareness by choosing to advertise it with branded posters, or allow them to provide their details to log in. Should you go through the latter route, you could have an opportunity to build up your database from those logging in to the WiFi. Just make sure you include an opt-in for privacy reasons, and even consider incentivizing the customer to opt in.
Provide Educational and Informative Content
The rule of thumb about content is that it has to be informative, educational, entertaining and empowering. Whether you are creating your blog for your site, adding to your social media, or creating campaigns to reach your audience, focus more on educating your customer.
What do we mean by this? Say you are a pet retailer looking to extend the reach of your brand awareness and reach new audiences. Blog posts like ‘Five Reasons Why My Dog Is Getting Fat’ is content your customer will actually want to know. If they are searching for it, your post will likely pop up organically for them to click on. The more trust you can develop with your audience, the more likely they are to buy from you.
Are you a B2B business, looking to expand your client base and build brand awareness? Why don’t you participate in an event? Webinars, conferences and summits are a great place to get your brand seen by your direct target market. Whether you choose to sponsor a stand at a related conference, or even host a webinar of your own, make sure you provide value to your customers with real-life case studies and information rather than sales pitches.
Partner With Affiliate Brands
There are a few options that you can opt for to get your brand awareness increased with partners. First, you can approach other media sources and news sites to share your content on their sites. Take the article mentioned earlier. You can approach various media companies and other pet-related sites to share your articles.
These backlinking strategies work toward building up your SEO, which in turn increases your organic traffic. Not only will their readers be exposed to your article and brand (and if you have chosen the site well, it will be your targeted audience that will be reading it), but Google responds well to link building. Consequently, this builds brand awareness.
When you build links with an authoritative site, Google can categorize you and rank you higher on search. This will translate into more traffic for you. Make sure it is an authoritative site though, and not just any website, as Google could penalize you.
Get An Influencer On Board
When we talk about an influencer, we do not mean someone like Kylie Jenner. Most of the brand awareness influencers in that category are macro-influencers with hefty fees for brands with big budgets.
Here, we are talking about micro-influencers with a couple thousand followers, who specialize in topics and industries. Their fan base follows them due to their shared interest in a particular topic. So, take a great hairstylist in your area, or even a quirky popular chef. These influencers know what they are talking about, are embedded in their field and convey informative content to their followers. This is the kind of content you can work on together to promote both your brands simultaneously.
Micro-influencers are not only cheaper to partner with than macro, but they are more engaging with their audience, spend time on the posts as well as answering questions and can act as a brand ambassador for your company. Again, here, you will know that their fanbase is your exact target audience, as compared with macro-influencers whose margins are incredibly reduced due to the sheer extent of their following. Instead of a shot in the dark, you will be providing educational content, through a popular third party to your audience.
Recap: Building Brand Awareness
In wrapping up, there are thousands of ideas that you can use to reach out to your audiences in order to build brand awareness. Digital marketing is a great, affordable way of marketing to your direct audience through various channels like social media. Keep this content as educational and entertaining as possible. Incentivization and competitions are always useful to drive people to your brand.
But don’t forget about traditional marketing. Billboards in your local community, well-placed advertising posters, sponsoring events and the arts could also expand your exposure. Sponsoring a musician, artist or sportsman has always been successful for brands looking to extend their reach. If radio slots are too expensive nationally, think locally. Not only are these much cheaper, but you will be speaking directly to your local community to support local businesses.