Tips for Branding Your Service Business
You want your business to exude a professional image and stand out from the competition. If you own a new business it can be hard to know what your company identity is from the get go and how you’d like your customers to perceive your business. It doesn’t need to be obvious to you right away, but having the right branding is definitely something that you’ll want to put some thought into.
Why is Branding Important
Branding tells customers not only who you are as a business, it’s also a promise to your customers. Branding tells the story of what customers can expect from your services, what you want to accomplish and how you’ll accomplish it. All these things ultimately help differentiate your business from others in your industry.
So grab a piece of paper and let’s get brainstorming.
To get to the bottom of defining your brand, you’ll need to start by formulating your brand strategy. Even though the visual aspects of a brand are important, your brand strategy will define what your company stands for and, in essence, is the kind of personality you want your company to have.
To create an effective branding strategy you need to start by outlining:
- Company mission: a statement outlining the purpose of your company
- What benefits do your services provide?
- How do you want your company to be perceived?
- How will you differentiate yourself from competitors?
To answer some of these questions, you’ll have to do some research on your target audience in order to create a strategy that integrates what your target audience thinks, wants and needs.
Use Your Employees
Once you’ve established your brand’s identity and strategy, your employees should have a clear understanding of what your company brand stands for and how to represent it when interacting with customers. A common mistake that small businesses make is to leave employees in the dark regarding what their brand represents.Your employees have stronger relationships with some of your customers and should be the very essence of your brand’s identity.
Have a meeting with your workers and let them in on what your company represents, why it’s important and how they can represent it when talking with customers. Certain procedures and rules will guarantee that your brand is being represented consistently. For example, if your brand emphasizes timeliness, then being late to an appointment is not within the brand’s identity.
To create a well-branded service business, you need to be authentic with what your company actually is. Not being ‘real’ will make your branding fall short. If your customers value practicality, it wouldn’t make much sense to make your company have a luxury feel to it.
Keep your target customer in mind. For example, if they’re older, you may not want to go too modern, and if they’re young, it may be wise to shy away from being too traditional.
Can Your Customer Relate to Your Business
Your business should be, and needs to be relatable to your customers. But what does it really mean to relate to your customers? Essentially, you need to understand what your customer’s problems are and try to fix them.
For example, if you own a cleaning company, a customer problem could be that other cleaning companies they’ve hired in the past did not specialize in cleaning certain things like drawers or laundry. Clearly this is an issue that your customer has, leaving a window open for you to fix it.
Invest in The Community
Get involved in the community. This doesn’t mean you need to give a bag full of cash to the first non-for-profit you come into contact with. Choose to spend your time supporting something you actually care about. Maybe you and a couple of your employees volunteer at a shelter once every month.
Volunteer work can do a lot for your company’s branding and shows customers that you care about your community. It’s even been proven that social responsibilities initiatives are correlated with high customer loyalty, employee engagement, and even profits.
Hire a Graphic Designer
You probably think that you can’t afford to hire a designer.
Hiring a graphic designer can sound expensive, but it really depends on where you look. Go with a freelance designer, as the prices are not as high as if you were to go with a large firm. You’ll get the most bang for your buck as hiring a designer will ensure you have a professional looking logo and create a consistency between your marketing/branding initiatives, like business cards and your company website.
Graphic designers will also suggest new ways to communicate your services and products to customers.
How Do You Recognize Great Branding?
So how will you know that you have branded your business successfully? When customers are willing to pay for your services because they understand what you’ll deliver, and why you’re better than the competition. In other words, brand equity.
Jobber Customers with Great Branding!
Oahu Tree Works
Oahu Tree Works have great branding. It’s clear what their promise to their customers is and how they plan on following through with that promise.
“We’re a small company of ISA Certified Arborists and Certified Tree Workers passionate about trees and tree work. We focus on developing long-term relationships with our customers and their trees.”
There are 2 key elements here: developing long-term relationships with customers and their passion for trees.
Navigate to their Meet the Team landing page, and you’ll find a bio for all of their employees, giving visitors to the site an opportunity to know more about their workers – consistent with their company promise.
One Call Clean Out
What sets this junk removal company’s branding apart from others is their ability to identify a unique problem their customers have. One Call Clean Out then uses that problem as a way to set themselves apart from their competitors.
“What separates us from 100% of the other junk services and clean out companies is our unique and creative solutions to your junk problems. We have three methods to dispose of your items: we can recycle it, we can donate it, and/or we can re-sell it in our retail store.”
One Call Clean Out provides their customers with environmentally and ethically responsible ways to get rid of their junk. Because of their unique way of disposing of materials, nothing ever goes to waste.
Download Our Branding Exercise
This exercise will help you get started in understanding and defining your brand.