Brand recognition and awareness are essential in enhancing a business’s credibility with customers and enabling the sales team to achieve their ultimate goal. Demand creation and corporate branding go together; this is particularly so for companies in their growth phase.
The following are three main reasons why founders and stakeholders need to focus on brand marketing.
1. Brand Marketing Enhances a Company’s Credibility
Consumers tend to purchase products from businesses that they recognise and deem trustworthy. Take companies like Amazon, Apple, and Starbucks for example, or B2B companies such as Intel and GE. Considering the state of the current market, brand credibility gives you some much-needed advantage over your competition.
Regardless of if you are a start-up or a business in its growth phase, establishing yourself as a market leader is very important. Marketing heads need to take advantage of their founder’s profile to build a positive brand perception and consumer behaviour.
When people think of a business, the CEO is the main figure who comes to mind. Therefore, CEOs play a big part in building a company’s credibility. Granted, they ought to be viewed as thought leaders. Employees need to play a key role in safeguarding the brand and they should be responsible for ensuring the organisation’s reputation in the industry is upheld since they engage with both the customers and prospects.
The credibility and reputation of your brand are very sensitive. This has been repeatedly demonstrated following instances such as Uber’s sexual harassment cases and complaints of gender bias, and the unfortunate case of United Airlines dragging a passenger from his seat and then more recently the dead puppy incident. Obviously, recovering from brand damage or any scandalous event is costly. However, if your business has credibility in the market, then it can recover from a disaster as long as you maintain transparency, are empathetic with those affected and act fast to resolve the problem.
2. Brand Marketing Brings in Investors
Founders and leaders of business are always searching for financiers who’ll enable their growth and exit strategies. In order to capture the interest of investors, you need more than just good products. Your industry reputation, the credibility of the CEO and the founders, and the performance of business financially will heavily influence the investors’ decision.
Barbara Clarke, who is a co-founder and principal at Impact Seat and also an angel investor, is of the opinion that a brand has to be bigger than the product, an opinion shared by many other investors. She also states that the quality of a business goes way beyond putting a focus on one product or one solution.
According to Clarke, the biggest mistake that is made by most startups is falling in love with the product they are offering at the expense of the issue they are trying to address. She also adds that if your brand is built upon a product and not a problem, then it will be very difficult to handle a pivot as startups tend to eventually pivot.
That is an undeniable and valid point. It is important to focus on building a corporate brand considering that it has enabled a lot of startups to improve their strategy and rebrand for a range of reasons. You need to create a brand and leadership they can believe in and trust.
You should always treat your brand like your home. The more time, effort, money and attention you put into your maintenance and renovation, the higher its asking price will when you decide to sell. Likewise, the higher the equity when you invest more in the corporate brand.
3. Brand Marketing Enhances Customer Engagement
In the modern digital era, the B2B landscape is drastically changing especially when it comes to buying decisions. Just like consumers, B2B buyers are now more empowered. The way in which businesses engage with vendors is seeing a change and CIOs no longer have the exclusive role of making the ultimate buying decisions.
Reports from the analyst firm Forrester indicate that 90% of businesses begin the purchasing process with a search, and 74% perform half of their research on the internet prior to making an offline purchase.
Research has also shown that a majority of B2B customers don’t come into direct contact with the vendors until they are 50-60% through the customer journey. David Krakauer, director, digital marketing & customer experience at Analog Devices, states that at that stage it’s just too late to influence decision making. He also says that, on the other hand, digital engagement usually happens right away.
According to him, if businesses are able to study a customer’s digital ‘body language’, then they can provide them better service through personalization and the delivery of relevant content. In the long run, doing so significantly enhances customer experience and allows the sales team to have a greater influence over their decision making.
So, marketers need to come up with strategies that not only educate customers but also engage them rather than selling to them. Your content needs to be interesting and well optimised for digital discovery; it is a good idea to get help from specialists such as this SEO agency in Hampshire.