This contributed post is for informational purposes only. Please consult a business, financial and legal professional before making any decisions. We may earn money or products from the affiliate links in this post.
If you have just launched a new business or would like to improve your brand awareness, there are plenty of online methods you can implement to connect with your audience on a personal level and make the most out of your opportunities to sell to them. The key to corporate branding is to use the same messages and image on all channels and stay consistent.
However, this doesn’t mean that you should only use one branding method. Below you will find fifteen free ways you can put into work to build stronger, more positive, and better connected brands on the internet.
No matter what you are offering, there is an audience on social media sites that will respond to your branding messages. No business can survive the competitive marketplace in the 21st century without integrating social media in their strategy. Find online communities on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other sites where you can add content that people can relate to. Make sure that all your messages are clear and consistent. Build an image that is easy to recognize and connect with. Highlight the main benefits of your products or services, so you can make the most out of your branding and marketing opportunities.
Of course, you will have to build social proof and credibility to build a strong brand. Ask your customers for testimonials and make sure that you are allowing them to say what they want to. If you are using WordPress, you can easily add a feedback page to any template and direct your customers to it, so you can gather social proof and testimonials. This method is much better than uploading the text yourself, as it is more credible. However, you might want to offer your customers some rewards for leaving a testimonial, as they will spend time and energy to write the review.
One of the best ways of creating a brand identity is adding videos to your sites and social media accounts. Branding videos can be fun, entertaining, or introduce your team to your potential customers. You can create stunning behind-the-scenes videos that will give your customers some insider information that they will appreciate. You might also give them some personal details, such as photos of a team birthday celebration, or ways your employees interact with each other in the office. If you have introduced a new technology in your business, you can create a stunning branding video about this development, too.
While getting feedback and reviews on your own pages is important, you should also encourage your customers to leave you reviews on social media and business directories. There are great review sites with excellent search engine positions, and getting links back from them will be valuable for your business. You should start by registering your business in local directories and sending out the link to the reviews to your existing customers. The more reviews you will get, the higher your business will rank in the directory.
A great way of building your reputation as an expert on the market is creating informative and educational infographics that highlight some of your most important achievements and the main benefits of your products. You can create simple infographics that will inform your readers about what you can do for them, or a branding video infographic that makes use of short videos, GIFs and other moving elements. Animated infographics grab visitors’ attention and create a professional way of connecting with them.
If your business is selling its products or services to other companies, white papers offer a great branding opportunity. You will be able to publish case studies and statistics, and create graphs and charts to showcase your results. If you would like to make your white papers even easier to understand, you can create a slideshow infographic to accompany it. You can build a strong brand by communicating your vision, values, and mission through white papers and presentations.
In case you are still sitting on the fence about press releases, you should give them a try. When you get an important award, launch a new service, or simply hit a milestone, get a professional copywriting company or SEO agencies such as Weboptimizers to write and distribute your content to news agencies and search engines. You can create a real buzz about your service launch or simply draw visitors to your site to find out more about your brand. Getting votes from Google News and other agencies will go a long way when it comes to branding.
If you know exactly where your visitors are and what type of content they engage with, you can approach other website owners and propose some guest post ideas. The good news is that you can get a dofollow link back to your site. The bad news is that not all websites offer this collaboration method for free and without restrictions. Some will charge you a flat fee, while others will have strict approval criteria. Before you approach any company, make sure that you read through the guest posting guidelines and you are comfortable with them, otherwise you would be wasting your time and energy.
In case you don’t have time to wait around until your search engine optimization campaign brings in results, you can get other people to sell your offers on their sites. You should set up a unique tracking link for all your partners who come on board, and this way you will know when they made a sale and you have to pay them per lead or a flat commission. No matter which market you are in, there must be some experienced promoters and publishers who are able to send you targeted traffic and get you sales. While finding them and convincing them that your offer will be profitable is not easy, it is worth the effort.
If you would like to provide more value to your website visitors than your time allows, you might allow guest posts on your blog. You can ask for different topics to be covered, and offer a link back to the author’s pages. This method will help you get unique and relevant content for free and build the reputation of your brand while not spending hours trying to write multiple blog posts every week. You will have more time focusing on the big picture.
If you run a small local business, it might be a good idea to build profitable reciprocal partnerships. You can team up with other companies with complimentary services or products and pool your marketing resources together. You might even ask for referrals from local firms and pay a commission. No matter which model you are choosing, make sure that you are both benefiting from the collaboration.
You can also set up giveaway promotions to build reciprocity and get people to try your products or services. Whether you are happy to send out samples or start people on free trials, you can gain trust in your marketplace in a short period of time. You can promote your giveaways on local ad sites and social media, and – if you get lucky – it can go viral, so you can reach new markets and customers with less effort.
A fun way of building and strengthening an online brand is setting up an online competition. If you can think of a word search or a quiz, you can promote your content on social media pages and share it in local groups. You will need to state the rules and the prizes. Make sure that you are taking photos and screenshots to use in your next branding campaign, and communicate your brand messages at the same time.
To position your brand as an expert company in a B2B market, you might want to try LinkedIn publishing. You can create articles, presentations, or even infographics and share it in your network. The more groups you share your content to, the more chance you will have to get it to go viral and reach the main decision makers in your market. Creating content for social media is challenging, and you will have to learn the basic rules before you get started.
Webinars and Podcasts
To build reciprocity and trust, you might want to give away valuable time and information to your target customers. Instead of hard sell, you might invite them to online podcasts or webinars, where they can learn new skills and pick up useful information. Find out what the most important problem of your target customer is and address it through the content. Follow a logical order, and make sure that you contact the participants or listeners after they have consumed your content to ask for feedback and explore sales opportunities.
Branding is an art that you need to master before you can connect with your audience at ease. Use the above tips to make the most out of online branding channels.