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This morning my husband and I had an interesting discussion about margarine. A brand (in all aspects) is important for business.

We bought a margarine different from the product we usually use. It has plain packaging, with nothing exciting about it. It is basically a container with “daily spread”. We usually purchase our preferred brand, but because the other brand was a great buy and discounted, it was enough to convince any client – including us.

How does this relate to your brand identity?
Our preferred brand has an interesting logo, name and tagline. The packaging is phenomenal, and you can see that real effort went into the design. The logo and brand of our margarine is original, and iconography is easily understood.

The other brand’s logo is uninteresting, and the packaging is as bland as the taste.

Bottom line is that I don’t like the packaging, the margarine is not tasty and the only reason we bought it, was the price. If the taste of the margarine had been tasty, I wouldn’t have minded buying it again. To sum it up: I completely lost faith in the brand.

1. What to consider about your brand?
1. The logo – Makes a lasting impression
2. The packaging – People like nice things
3. Faith that customers have in your service or product.
Most important point of all: It is useless having all imagery and communication in place and people dislike your product or service. They won’t spend any money on it again. (Like my margarine)

2. What about a business plan?
Here are some questions to help you decide your Unique Value Proposition (UVP):
• Who is your target market?
• What service (or products) is your business selling?
• Is your service or products unique?
• Why should your customers / clients use this service? (How do you resolve their problems?)

Have a good look at this:

o Good icon
o Well thought out text (indicates a pipe)
o An incredible tagline that explains their solution to your problem

I believe that surgeons are skilled professionals which makes a “Drain Surgeon” an expert in their field and it makes me believe in their credibility.

3. How to understand customer behaviour
Establishing your target market is an important and easy way to start. If your target market is the general public, you must understand that each age group is available on different platforms.

The younger generations are not as interested in Facebook than the older generations. They hang out on Instagram.

Your business also has a certain marketing differentiator. Most days I come home to find a pamphlet stuck to our gate regarding tree felling, rubbish removal, electricians, plumbers and estate agents (who usually include a calendar of some sort). I run to the cupboard in the garage every time we experience an incident that require a solution. Their solution.

4. Social Media
If you are using social media to market your business, it is important to know that you must make regular posts. Not any posts. Posts about your UVP. “How can I solve your problem?” Many companies are so desperate to make a sale and only post about themselves. Care about your clients, and they will care about you.

Make sure your content is worth their while and try to educate them in the best way possible.

5. Deals / Discounts
A discount convinced me to buy the margarine.

If you can afford it, make your clients a deal:
o 10% off website purchases
o Free delivery with purchases over a certain price

6. Trying to do it all
In small business ventures, this is a tough nut to crack. You might be a small business and can not afford the extra hands you need.
Bite the bullet and hire an employee or consider installing software that can cut back your workload. According to Lightspeed “your business will only start making money once you offload some of your responsibilities to another qualified professional”.