As small business owners, we are busy taking care of so many different functions within our businesses that sometimes we neglect small details that can make or break our enterprises. Having a clear, cohesive, and compelling message embedded in our content and across all of our communication outlets is one such detail.
If your audience does not know who you are as a business, and how your products and services can answer a question or solve a problem they may have, they won’t consider that information buried treasure and try to dig it up on their own.
Your brand message, according to ThriveHive.com, strengthens your company’s values and reputation to the outside world and allows it to resonate with your ideal audience by inspiring, persuading, and motivating them to relate to your brand, and encouraging them to consider you as an option. Your brand message plays an important role in selling your products and services.
What is your brand message, and what is it conveying to your audience about you and your company? Are they confused by your message? Do they see the value in your brand? Ultimately, do they know enough about your product or service to help them make their decision to buy or not?
Every touch-point a customer or potential customer has with you, or your product or service, shapes their view of you. It’s critical that each of those touch points send the same message. When you create a clear brand message it ensures you’re moving in one direction, telling your story in a cohesive manner, and creating consistency and continuity for your customers.
Where can your audience find your brand message? Is it readily available on your website or in the content that you produce? Before you worry about your current statement, answer the seven questions your audience wants to know about you, your company, and the products and services you sell today. Then review the brand message they are currently digesting and determine if it’s time to revise it.
“Who are you?” is not an existential question, although it can take you down that road. It simply refers to the name of your company and why that name best reflects what you do. Telling consumers what you do lets them know where your company stands in relation to seemingly similar companies in your industry; while telling them who you do it for really clarifies the specific kinds of people who are generally most interested in the products and services you offer. By explaining why, you have an opportunity to tell the story of why you choose this product, service, or industry; why you’re doing it for this group of people; and why you chose to do it in this way.
Learning your story enables your audience to connect with you and relate to you and your business in a positive way. Most people are only interested in, and will likely only remember how your products or services will benefit them, so don’t rely on the descriptions of the features and benefits of your product or service. Instead, describe the experience of using and benefiting from it.
This may be a difficult concept for some of us to wrap our brain around, but Apple is a great example of selling more than just a product. When you see one of their ads, you don’t see bland descriptions of data storage and processor speed—at least not at first. The first thing you see is the idea (or, rather, ideal) of what their products can do for their customers. Apple tells people what they’re missing in life and sells what fills the gap. And, Apple tells you why their competitors cannot match their ability to satisfy you—which, in their opinion, is why you should buy from Apple and not those others.
Lastly tell people where they can find your products or services. Let them know how to contact you or locate your company on and off the web. Give them your web address, your social media handles, physical locations, phone number, and email address. Help them find you!
Your brand message is a way to simply, clearly and compellingly communicate what you offer and connect with prospective customers in a way that allows them to get to get to know, like, and trust you and feel comfortable buying from you. It is just as important as deciding what business you’re going into and what product you’re going to offer. And, it’s certainly critical to selling it.