Competition in e-commerce is getting tougher. Favorable prices and a good product are far from a guarantee that the offer will be in demand. To attract as many customers as possible and make maximum sales, you need to take a competent approach to promotion. At the same time, it is advisable to create your own brand , which will allow you to build up from competitors, increase demand for goods and increase confidence in the online store. See our detailed instructions for how to do this.
Features of online branding
Brand – a stable image that evokes associations with a specific brand, manufacturer, product or service. This is a kind of intangible asset, thanks to which consumers choose and buy a product, as well as recommend it to others.
Online branding or e-branding is the process of preparing, developing and promoting a sustainable image of a business in the online sphere. Within the framework of Internet branding, a set of measures is carried out that form a springboard for marketing communications between the seller and the consumer.
- it has a wide coverage;
- provides high-quality interaction with the audience;
- it allows you to control processes, use an individual approach and personalization by tracking interests and preferences;
- high technology makes it possible to create large multimedia platforms, integrations, branded games, and viral videos;
- content is instantly distributed to users of blogs, forums, social networks, and other platforms where CA is present;
- you get quick feedback from potential buyers, which you can use to evaluate or predict the result.
Compared to traditional offline campaigns, the effectiveness of online branding is significantly higher. This is due to differences in the principles of information perception and the unlimited possibilities of the online communication environment.
In the network, companies provide a huge amount of content in different formats, communicate directly with customers, learn and take their opinion into account when adjusting the strategy. The cost of creating a brand on the Internet is lower than with classic branding.
By improving the perception of the company’s image in the buyer’s mind, brands optimize the financial performance of the business. The technology helps you achieve several consecutive goals by forming:
- Customer loyalty.
Through branding, companies manage to:
- capture a niche market;
- attract attention and increase awareness;
- to guarantee the quality of the product;
- justify your pricing policy;
- to develop sales;
- find good business partners.
The brand structure
The basis of a brand is information about a product, service, or company presented in a special symbolic form that can evoke strong associative connections. During the branding process, a number of unique elements are developed:
- the name of the project;
- the website and its design;
- corporate identity – logo, colors, fonts, workwear, etc.;
- corporate communication – PR, advertising, internal events for staff, external events;
- rules of conduct and corporate culture;
- tactile components – materials that are used in production, packaging, and specific flavors.
To get brand status, it is not enough just to provide original information about the company and product. Brands become brands that have gained the trust of customers and become highly recognizable in the online environment.
Stages of creating your own brand
Online branding consists of several stages. Each of them needs to be given quite a lot of time and effort. It is difficult to change the already formed image in the future. Therefore, you should work for a high-quality result initially.
Next, we will analyze the process in detail and give step-by-step recommendations.
The work begins with finding ideas and monitoring the market. An idea is a key message that needs to be conveyed to the consumer through various communication channels.
The first step is to write out all the available ideas and arrange a brainstorming session. Describe each idea in more detail, structure the information, and compare different versions based on similar criteria. Think about how relevant and realistic they are, and how much it will cost to implement them.
Put your options in order of priority, taking into account their potential and relevance. To do this, contact Analytics: see the TOP popular keyword queries, study competitors ‘ activities, trends, and audience preferences. Based on the research results, choose the most appropriate idea.
Best business idea:
- based on personal experience;
- reflects the characteristics of the product and the company;
- meets the business goals and needs of the target audience.
Future positioning should embody the merits of the company and form a correct idea of its activities.
The second step is to create a concept based on the chosen idea. Think through your business philosophy, social mission, values, moral, ethical and commercial principles. From this, a concept is formed that will need to be adhered to throughout the company’s activities. This information is used by consumers to identify popular brands.
Formulate a clear picture will help:
- analysis of your own life values, mission, and personal principles;
- choosing important items that can be implemented through the brand’s lens;
- identification of an acute problem (global or related to Central Asia) that can be solved with the help of a product / service;
- create a unique trading offer.
For a better understanding and inspiration, it’s worth exploring successful brand concepts in e-Commerce. Here are some good examples:
- Geox. The company’s positioning is based on the idea of healthy shoes. The production uses high-quality materials and takes into account the physiological characteristics of a person. The idea is conveyed in the USP: “Shoes that breathe”.
- MasterCard. The payment system competently shifts the focus from the material to the emotional component. The idea that not everything is measured in money is broadcast: “To witness history is priceless.”
- Nike. In the position of a well-known sports brand, emphasis is placed on fashion trends that are displayed in the manufactured sportswear.
Developing a brand name is one of the most important branding tasks. Naming is a mandatory component of the company’s individual image. Success largely depends on how successful and appropriate the store’s name will be.
The main task of an entrepreneur at this stage is to choose a word or phrase that best reflects the idea and concept, embodies a certain message. At the same time, it is important to adhere to the necessary legal and marketing criteria.
The name must be unique, easy to understand, and easy to remember. Make sure that it matches the site’s domain and the nickname of the company’s social media pages.
In the context of a brand, naming becomes meaningful and evokes associations with the product. Sometimes a random word is chosen as the name, which is later given meaning due to the success of the company. This was the case in the history of Mars, Nike, and Apple.
Examples of original names:
- Pepsi is derived from the digestive enzyme pepsin.
- WhatsApp-created based on the popular youth greeting “What’s up!”.
- “Halase” – a positive assessment of Chinese cuisine with an Asian accent.
- personal and family names – Tommy Hilfiger;
- pseudonymous – “meat eater”»;
- descriptive – “online store of coobowie»;
- a metaphorical Oasis;
- in the form of an idiom (winged expression) – ” White Crow»;
- in the format of abbreviations and abbreviations – “MTS”, IKEA.
The next step is to create a corporate identity. It includes all sorts of visual components, a slogan, corporate ethics, and scripts for communicating with potential buyers.
A key element of corporate identity is visual communication:
- brand name;
- color scheme;
- email signature;
- templates for presentations and thank-you letters;
- business cards;
- other graphic elements (on the website, advertising banners, in social networks, on printed advertising products).
Adjust the rendered logo to all the ad platforms you use, including the mobile version of the site and the app. It should look good regardless of size, look harmonious in different proportions of details, and evoke positive emotions. This image increases the company’s visibility.
Corporate culture is best described in a separate reference book, which contains detailed instructions, explanations, and answers to frequently asked questions. It will improve team discipline and facilitate the process of introducing newcomers to the course.
Corporate ethics must be observed in all communication channels. Follow the corporate style of dialogue with clients in the blog, social networks, email, instant messengers, and online chat. When considering the nature of communication, take into account the business topic, niche specifics, audience and product features. This can be a formal tone or a friendly conversation in a conversational style.
Design is also very important. Link it to your name, idea, or communication style. Pay attention not only to the website design, but also to the product packaging. The majority of consumers welcomes and remembers brands “dress for success”.
Next, it’s the turn to develop a development strategy. Make a clear plan of action for the next 6-9-12 months.
A list of the main events:
- defining the product line and opportunities for subsequent scaling;
- drawing up a business plan;
- selection of tools and channels for promotion;
- planning your advertising budget.
After completing the standard procedures, start implementing a marketing strategy to promote your brand online. Priority tasks include creating and developing the company’s website, landing page, blog, and brand communities.
The blog should publish review and analytical articles on the topic of the niche. In communities, in addition to informational posts, you need to organize contests, sweepstakes, and surveys that increase audience engagement.
In addition, enable the following tools::
- search engine promotion;
- contextual advertising;
- targeting interested users in social networks;
- PR-publications in mass media, catalogs, price aggregators, and popular personal blogs;
- email marketing;
- loyalty programs for regular customers.
In the course of brand promotion, you need to keep records of important indicators, analyze audience activity, and adjust your strategy in a timelymanner . For example, you may need to change your logo or slogan wording over time. Improvements are practiced even by well-known large brands.
Starting a project
The final step is testing and launching a brand project. At this stage, you need to make sure that everything is ready and finish the finishing touches. Create a content strategy, order a professional product survey, and develop scripts. Involve your employees in brand promotion by motivating them to sell with special bonuses.
After launching, carefully analyze the feedback, and change the design, approach, and sequence if necessary. In order for a brand to settle in the minds of consumers, you should often and efficiently contact your audience and work with your reputation:
- keep active in your social media profiles;
- monitor brand mentions and track reviews and comments;
- quickly work out the negative.
In some cases, when the concept does not give the desired effect at all, rebranding is necessary.
Typical branding mistakes
When developing a brand, entrepreneurs often make a lot of mistakes that prevent them from achieving the desired result in the future. Remember them and try to avoid them:
- Blurred goals. Even before you start working on a project, you need to clearly understand what branding is for.
- Incorrect planning. The budget should include all development costs, including market analysis, naming, logo creation, trademark registration, promotion, and so on.
- Ignoring the research. You need to know as much information as possible about your niche and target audience. At the same time, focus on Analytics data, not your own conjectures.
- Bad positioning. A brand is not just a name and logo, but an Association with a company, the personification of clear qualities.
- An attempt to please everyone. Instead, it is better to segment your audience and choose a narrower niche.
In addition, it is important to follow the implementation sequence and not neglect legal protection, which will prevent unauthorized copying.
Online branding consists of hundreds of small tasks. Marketing research, positioning, naming, corporate identity development, trademark registration, promotion – a small part of what needs to be done to make the company recognizable.
To think that a brand is just pathos and expensive image advertising is a big mistake. E-branding is not limited to creating a slogan and logo. Everything is much more global. This is an individual style, a constant presence in the communication environment, a special language, associative connections. What they understand without further ADO, they use and recommend to others.