Branding on a Budget

Natwest recently published an article surrounding branding for SMEs on a budget – and we wanted to share that with you!

Did you know that according to StartUp Britain (a non-profit think tank) more than 400,000 start-ups have been created in 2018 so far. And whilst it may be hard to beliebe, SMEs in fact have huge advantages over big brands. Whilst SMEs may not necessarily have all the money, and therefore no huge marketing department to assist, but they do however have the ability to be innovative and flexible.

Dawn Baird, partner of Belfast-based Sensei, stated that “Visibility and consistency are key to branding. This ranges from your logo, look and feel of your website, your offline marketing, to how you dress at networking meetings and what types of experience clients encounter when they contact you.” Gordon Cesareo, creative director of Market Accents, said: “A considered online/offline branding programme addresses functional, emotional and aspirational needs in your customers and creates a unique experience,” he says. “A brand with a fine-tuned personality, a clear sense of purpose, strong beliefs and effective visual communication will undoubtedly resonate with your audience.”

The nitty-gritty of building your brand?

Col Skinner, from digital marketing agency Profoundry, shared his personal insights on how to create a brand: “Even as a one-man consultancy, branding was a very important stage. I believed that if I invested in building a business that I took seriously, then this would come across to my clients.”

Skinner recommends that SMEs should:

  • Choose a brand name that differentiates them from the competition.
  • Find brands that they love and extract what gives them confidence.
  • Imagine their logo on items such as the website, business cards, merchandise – and question whether it looks right.

Top tips

  • Do not scrimp on visual branding; it is your business’s calling card on the world.
  • Engaging your customers on an emotional level pays off in terms of loyalty and advocacy.
  • Low-cost but effective branding can be achieved through social media and blogging.

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