Ways to Build Your Brand in 2014

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The surge of the December shopping rush induces a commercial chaos that only a fresh New Year can remedy. January brings a welcomed relief from the holiday madness, providing an ideal time for reflection on the successes (and perhaps, failures) of the year past. The New Year provides a renewed vigor and an optimistic sense of the mission at hand: to grow and prosper.

Use these tips to create more confidence in your brand, implement a promising technological presence, inspire your employees, and effectively impact your business growth into 2014.

Examine the current state of your company.

In order to know what direction to take your company in 2014, you need to evaluate where it has come from. Think about the original vision, the products that currently exist, and how they have collectively contributed to the current brand power. Examine your budget, productivity, and overall morale within the company. Consider whether or not you are attracting your intended customer base, or if there is anything that you feel might be distracting the company from its vision and overall success.

Perhaps 2013 was a great year for you, so in order to stay in the game for 2014, you need to research and brainstorm how to keep up with the ever-changing trends. Whatever the case, your budget, marketing plan and sales projections need to tightly intertwine in order to maximize your potential for growth. By taking the time to process where you stand, you allow for a clearer understanding of how to best map out methods of growth in the year ahead.

Boost employee morale with sales incentives and rewards.
Employees are the backbone of your company. If they are unhappy, your business will not thrive. Aim to make employees “ambassadors” for your brand so they are able to have a memorable impact on the customer. Create a company culture that excites and motivates everyone by using incentives and rewards to give them a tangible reason to best manage, market and sell your products. An enduring culture provides itself as an incredibly strong foundation for your business, and allows for you to focus your time and energy on the most important aspects of brand development rather than maintaining competent employees.

Think about what your customers want.

By knowing and understanding what the customer needs, you are better able to influence a positive response to your brand. Step into the shoes of your customer, and use this perspective to implement a plan that will compel them to choose you over the competition. This may be as simple as creating a rewards program and tailoring offers to individuals based on their purchase history.

It may also go as far as partnering with a local or regional charity to provide buyer incentives that include a meaningful contribution to society. For example, according to goodpurpose, 73% of global consumers say they would switch brands if a different brand of similar quality supported a good cause. A small statement of goodwill could create engaged customers. And engaged customers are likely to visit more often, spend more money, and promote your company’s brand to others.

Step up and consolidate your social media presence.

Facebook and Twitter are certainly big players in the field of social media marketing, but where else do your customers hang out? It may be time to consider branching out. Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube, and various daily deal sites are additional platforms that can be big for business, as they can effectively speak to potential customers in a way that has not yet become cliché.

Hopefully, you have customers subscribing to email newsletters, your Twitter feed, Facebook updates, and blog posts. Consolidate them by using a social network manager such as Roost, Hootsuite, Sprout Social and Spot On. Use these to schedule social media campaigns and get reporting on how your audience is engaging with your content.

Connect with Shoppers In-Store

Connect with your customers so that you are personally bringing your brand to them. Go back to the brick and mortar basics and aim to create the most superior in-store experience imaginable. This is the foundation of your brand power, and even small improvements can make a big impact.

Get in front of your customers and interact with them in the form of in-store events and relevant promotions. Train employees to create an impactful emotional connection with the customer. Introduce helpful in-store technology in the form a mobile shopping app that allows for a new and beneficial shopping experience. When you enhance the interaction and touch points with the customer, you are better able to understand them and deliver faster on their expectations.

The first few weeks of the New Year provide an opportune time to refresh and restore a positive overall outlook for your brand. Stagnancy is never a good thing, so use this time to liven things up and make the best plan possible for your overall growth and success. Twenty thirteen surely went by in a flash, so grab 2014 by the horns and get growing.