When it comes to sales, many people underestimate the power of branding. Often it is not an individual product that sticks in a customer’s mind- it is a brand. Brands are what people see and remember from ads, and brands are what have personality and character. A brand is a visible sign of the company, and it represents all the company’s products, services, and even culture. That’s a powerful thing, and taking branding seriously is a good way to boost sales.
Brands tell customers a lot about a product. Every brand has a story, a target demographic, and a reputation. You can use branding to shape the way customers view your company and your products. Your brand is a quick way to tell the customer something about yourself. This is an opportunity to show the customer your values. In this post, we will run down 5 big tips to help you brand yourself for success.

1. Tell a Consistent Story
Your brand should be a short summary of your values and goals, and it should be consistent over time and in different contexts. When people think about your brand, they should think about some aspect of the value you add for customers. If you clog up your brand’s space with the features of all your different products, or a laundry list of goals for the customer experience, nothing will stick. You have to come up with a short, simple, and consistent description of your value-added and associate that with your brand. That turns your brand into an ambassador for your products and drives people towards becoming buyers.

2. Never Deceive Customers
It is crucially important that you never lie to customers or mislead them. This is the age of the Internet. Every possible customer is only one Google search away from learning about all of your past scandals. The last thing you need is a deception that seemed like a good idea at the time sinking your brand for years afterward. Nowadays, it is quite difficult to lie to customers about something important and get away with it, and the penalties for getting caught are a permanently marred reputation. That’s a huge risk. Even putting that aside, lying to customers is unethical. Nobody will buy a brand associated with intentional deception.

3. Emphasize Differences
Just about every field is a crowded market. If you want to succeed and sell, then you need to show the customer why you are different from your rivals. Use your brand to show off what sets you apart from everyone else, and why that should matter for customers. Your brand needs to tell customers why they should pick you instead of someone else, and that comes down to demonstrating the special and unique advantages of your company. The better job you can do with this, the more people will take notice of your brand, and then your products. Remember that nobody will know about you if you don’t use marketing and advertising to explain who you are and why you are worth their time and money.

4. Use Emotional Appeal
Branding isn’t just about cold, hard facts. It’s also about winning over people’s hearts. One of the most powerful ways to do that is through emotional appeal. Depending on the field you work in, there are usually some good choices for associating a certain emotion with your brand. For example, Dunkin Donuts often invokes the image of their brand as an important part of the daily routine of a typical busy American. Here, Dunkin Donuts has captured emotions like comfort, productivity, and anticipation all at once. The shoe brand Tom’s emphasizes their charitable giving, so the brand is associated with charity, hope, and sharing. Think of positive emotions that you can associate with your brand and work that into the marketing around the brand. That will let customers feel the brand, and the more in tune with the brand they are, the more likely they are to buy.

5. Aim High
Remember that point about differences? Don’t just try to do something that everyone else is doing in a different way. You should stand out from the other companies because you are above them, not because you are apart from them. Let your brand show people that the way you do things is do much better than everyone else that you are the obvious best choice. You can use your brand to show your pride in yourself and what you do. The brand should demonstrate just how much better your culture and values are compared to the rest.

If you follow these tips, you should soon see more people buying in, and more repeat business. A strong brand leads to strong sales, so cultivate yours and make sure you are leaving a strong impression.

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About the Author: Jennifer Mathews