5 Strategies to Gain More YouTube Subscribers

As you probably know, video content tends to engage audiences much more than any other type of content. It’s why YouTube is so popular. However, what you may not realize is that YouTube is not only considered one of the most popular–and biggest–social platforms, it’s also the second biggest search engine on the web behind Google. As such, YouTube is not something you can ignore. In order to leverage YouTube to attract more leads, you’ll need to gain more subscribers on YouTube. This is a lot easier said than done. After all, just posting videos will not increase subscribers. To do so, follow these five ways to gain YouTube subscribers outlined below:

1. Create Content Worth Subscribing To

You’d be surprised how many people make the mistake of thinking that quantity is more important than quality. You might manage to get more views by uploading more videos, but nobody is going to subscribe to your channel if your videos are average at best. Put more time into creating good content — this means making sure your videos are relevant and informative and that they are highly produced–and you’re more likely to gain subscribers. A subscriber is worth way more than a view, after all, since subscribers are more likely to keep watching your videos.

2. Organize Playlists By Engagement

Organizing your videos into playlists makes it easier for viewers to consume your content. When creating your playlist, organize your videos by engagement. This means putting the videos with the highest audience attention rate at the top of your playlist. The reason you should do this is because viewers who finish a video will be shown the next video on the playlist. They are more likely to watch through the video if it has a high audience attention rate (it’s usually an indication of its quality). Videos with the lowest audience retention rate should bring up the back of your playlist. Essentially, your goal should be to hook your viewers by showing them the very best of your video content.Youtube Icon

3. End Your Videos With A Subscription CTA

Always end your videos with a call-to-action (CTA) asking the viewer to subscribe. Viewers who watch all the way through your videos obviously kept watching it for one reason or another and as such, are more likely to subscribe to your channel in order to have easy access to new videos as they come. It might seem obvious, but this is one of the best ways to gain more subscribers since not all viewers will think to subscribe if not encouraged to after watching a video.

Check out our article: Powerful Call-to-Action Phrases to Increase Clicks

4. Optimize Your Videos With Relevant Keywords

Just because a video is visual content does not mean it can’t be optimized for SEO using keywords. You can attract subscribers to your channel by properly optimizing your videos and your channel using relevant, high-quality keywords. You can use these keywords in your videos’ titles, descriptions, transcription files, thumbnail files, and video files. Remember, YouTube is a massive search engine in itself, so you’ll want to make it easy for your content to be found.

5. Use Vibrant Thumbnails For Your Videos

You’re not going to get subscribers if users don’t click on your video links. Take care to choose high-quality and relevant thumbnails for your videos. This will help your videos stand out on YouTube’s search page.

YouTube can be a very effective platform when it comes to attracting new leads, especially if you manage to gain subscribers. Be sure to use these five tips to gain YouTube subscribers to your company’s YouTube channel.

Learn To Use Social Media To Find New Leads
smart goal examples

Examples Of How Smart Goals Should Align With Your Business Goals

One of the most important things a company can do is set regular business goals. They point the business in the right direction and keep activities focused on achieving specific objectives. Now, writing down a general goal is a good start, but to make them happen, you must take action. And that is why your SMART goals must align with your business development goals. You have more than likely heard of SMART goals. They are goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time bound. Here are a couple of SMART goal examples to get you started.

5 Smart Goal Examples For Business Development

Example #1: Expanding your wedding business’s regional footprint

Let’s say you want to expand your wedding business’s geographic footprint to open up new markets and to increase revenues. Here is an example of how a SMART goal would align with this business goal.

  • Specific: I will lease a 2000 square-foot storefront in downtown Chicago.
  • Measurable: The lease will be signed no later than January 15th.
  • Attainable: I will contact three leasing agents who specialize in storefront properties in downtown Chicago and make a trip specifically to the area to find the ideal property.
  • Relevant: I have bridal customers and consultants from the Chicago area asking if I would open another location in their area to make it easier for them to shop. This opens up a new market and customer base, with a high probability of successful growth.
  • Time-Bound: All of this must be done by January 15th, to allow for the store to open in early February, near the start of the Spring bridal season.

Example #2: Lower Shipping Costs

Let’s say you want to lower your shipping costs but want to do it without lowering customer satisfaction. Here is an example of a SMART goal that aligns with this business objective:

  • Specific: I will switch all of my shipping from UPS to Fedex.
  • Measurable: I will complete the transition to Fedex by July 1st.
  • Attainable: I will contact Fedex and set up a new merchant account to start the process. I will also order the appropriate labels and software updates to make this transition as easy as possible.
  • Relevant: Fedex’s rates for shipping to the region of the country where most of my customers are is 20% lower than UPS. They also deliver within 3 to 5 business days, which is the same as UPS. The lower cost and same delivery time should maintain customer satisfaction levels while lowering costs.
  • Time-Bound: I will make the change by July 1st to coincide with the beginning of the new quarter to allow clean tracking of the impact this change makes to shipping costs and customer satisfaction.

These SMART goal examples should help you develop your own. When you align your actionable goals with your broader business goals, you will see progress. Can you give any other SMART goal examples that align with your business objectives?

Inbound marketing will help you grow your business by attracting website visitors, converting them into leads and closing leads into customers
attraction marketing

4 Strategies of a Successful Attraction Marketing Formula

Almost every business engages in inbound marketing in one way or another–and they should. Inbound marketing is an effective way to increase your brand awareness, build authority, and find new leads. However, it’s extremely broad. For instance, you could set up a social media page and that would be considered inbound marketing. To truly get the most out of your inbound marketing efforts consider engaging in attraction marketing, which emphasizes a strategy that focuses on your audience. The following are the four main strategies that make up an effective attraction marketing formula:

Focus on Story Branding

Storytelling is an essential way to connect or relate with audiences. One of the common challenges businesses face is finding a way to not only engage with their audience, but to connect on a personal level. Using storytelling to get your message across is one of the most effective ways to do this. In particular, you should focus on story branding. Story branding involves sharing information about your brand through the power of storytelling.

b2b marketing strategy

For example, instead of just saying “our company provides the best product,” story branding would involve explaining why your company was established (to provide a service or product missing on the market), what your values and beliefs are, what your goals as a company are, and how you plan to accomplish those goals. This allows you to connect on a more emotional and relatable level.

Strengthen Thought Leadership

Position yourself as an authority within your industry by producing content that is relevant to your target audience and that is more helpful than promotional. The stronger your thought leadership is, the more you’ll be trusted by potential leads. Not only can you strengthen thought leadership by regularly publishing high-quality content, you can also do so by regularly engaging with your audience on social media, answering questions or concerns that they have, contributing to group discussions, contributing to posts by followers or by other thought leaders, and more.

Nurture Leads

Capturing a lead isn’t equivalent to closing a sale. You can’t just assume that they are ready to buy if they’ve given you their email address. You need to nurture the leads that you’ve captured until they are ready. A good way to get a lead to unsubscribe from your email list is to immediately send them promotional content pressuring them into purchasing something. Instead, send them more in-depth content based on their past level of engagement with your site (and the information they’ve provided in your opt-in form). The goal is to build a relationship so that by the time they do make a purchase, they’re more likely to stay loyal to your brand.

Focus On Customer Service 

Last, but not least, focus on customer service. Don’t just dismiss your leads once they turn into customers because you’re chasing the next sale. Increasing customer loyalty is important. The better their experience is (and continues to be) the more likely it is that they will stay loyal and even recommend your brand to friends and colleagues.

The most effective way to implement inbound marketing into your marketing strategy is by focusing on this attraction marketing formula. Doing so will help you attract leads, connect with them on an emotional level, and build lasting relationships with them.

Inbound marketing will help you grow your business by attracting website visitors, converting them into leads and closing leads into customers

Creating Advertising Strategies That Work

Advertising is an integral ingredient of building a successful business. It’s how you make your business, products, or services known to your target audience. You must devise creative advertising strategies if you want your customers to choose your products or services over the competitors’.

While there are many ways to advertise, your chosen strategy must fit your brand objectives. This post looks at some advertising strategies and guides you on creating one that works for your business.

Defining an Advertising Strategy

An advertising strategy is an action plan that aims at the following:

  • Building brand awareness
  • Attracting new customers
  • Inviting existing customers to make multiple purchases
  • Increasing sales.

Your advertising strategy is part of your comprehensive marketing plan. They must align with your company goals and objectives and can be a mix of digital and traditional marketing channels. These are the two broad categories of advertising strategies. Traditional marketing entails using media like:

  • Television ads
  • Billboards
  • Prints ads
  • Direct mail
  • Street teams

Digital advertising tactics include the following:

  • Social media marketing
  • Email marketing campaigns
  • Content marketing
  • Search engine optimization
  • Pay-per-click advertising
  • Social media marketing
  • Influencer marketing

Steps to Creating Effective Advertising Strategies

Having the most effective advertising strategy takes time to achieve. You must continually fine-tune your approach to determine the advertising methods that best engage your customers.

If you’re starting or want to overhaul your current advertising strategy, here’s a template you can use:

1. Identify Your Target Audience

Your advertising strategy should be about reaching out to the people interested in purchasing your products or services. Consider the specific demographics of this target group, including the following:

  • Their gender
  • Age
  • Attitudes
  • Personal values and attitudes
  • Income levels
  • Occupation.

With this information, you can create a buyer person or a fictional representative of the target customer base that your business wants to reach. The consumer profile of your target audience can give you an abstract idea of what your customers want. You can use this to shape your advertising message.

2. Determine Your Advertising Objectives

Once you identify your target audience, ask yourself why you want to advertise. There could be different goals to achieve through advertising, such as boosting sales, promoting newly launched products, or increasing website traffic. It could also be to create awareness about a product’s benefits.

Having clarity of purpose is a crucial step forward in the direction of creating an effective advertising strategy. Your marketing objectives can also inform your choice of advertising platforms, as different channels have varying outcomes.

3. Create Your Advertising Content

Once you determine what you want to achieve through your advertising strategy, it’s time to create content that helps you achieve this goal. Some factors to help in your content creation strategy are the following:

  • Having an SEO strategy such as voice or video search for local and mobile SEO
  • Keyword research for more insights into what your customers want to see
  • Having a blog or website that you regularly update with relevant, educating, and engaging content
  • Creating attractive landing pages that trigger a sales funnel for your business.

Influencers and content marketing agencies can help you craft relevant content that enables you to put your brand message out there. Forging partnerships with these professionals can help you reach your target audience in ways that automated content advertising strategies cannot.

4. Choose Your Advertising Platforms

In choosing your advertising platforms, consider those most helpful in reaching your target audience. In this digital era, only a tiny percentage of businesses will consider traditional marketing channels as their primary platforms. Digital advertising platforms are more likely to reach a broader audience and have a greater return on investment.

Consider incorporating a mix of advertising channels to test their viability for your business. Online marketing provides an array of advertising strategies, as previously mentioned. However, if you’re new to advertising, you’d rather stick to a few channels first.

Once you accumulate enough analytics and data from the channels, you can determine their effectiveness and consider branching out to other platforms. After testing the results, you can create a vibrant mix of responsive media for an effective advertising strategy.

5. Audit the Results and Keep Improving

Launching an advertising strategy is only the beginning of your business promotion strategy. You must also analyze and refine the various advertising methods you use. A/B testing is one of the approaches you can use. It entails showing different types of ads to similar customers. Then, you can gauge the messages with better click-through rates. Investing more in ad messages with higher click-through rates can yield better returns for your business.

Your marketing team should constantly be on its toes to review marketing campaign metrics. Consequently, it should engage in relevant targeting to reach a broad audience. Assessing and refining advertising strategies is an ongoing process as long as your business operates.

Effective Advertising Strategies Are Crucial to Your Business Success

A business without a well-structured advertising strategy will fail because it lacks a systematic method of reaching its customers. An advertising plan creates brand awareness and tells your customers why they should choose your products or services, not your competitors’.

Creating a strategy that works and withstands the test of time can be complex, but the steps above can help you get started. With time, you can fine-tune the plan to add more steps depending on what works best for your business. You should eventually be able to automate your advertising strategy and reap from the investment.

Interactive Marketing Examples

How Interactive Content Can Boost Your Inbound Marketing Efforts

Marketing has changed drastically over the years, and as a result, marketers are finding new ways to stay relevant in an increasingly competitive landscape. The need to catch the audience’s attention has never been more intense. One technique that has proven quite effective is using interactive content to drive up inbound marketing efforts. In the sections below, we’ll discuss how interactive content works, its benefits, and some strategies you can implement to boost your marketing.

What is Interactive Content?

Interactive content is an engaging form of content that requires the audience to participate. That means instead of just reading or watching something passively, the audience must interact with the content somehow.

This particular type of content is so effective because it creates a more immersive and personalized experience for the audience. With this type of content, your audience isn’t just consuming the content but being an active participants. This makes the content more memorable and enjoyable.

So, what are some examples of interactive content? Well, if you have ever been on your favorite social media platform and seen a post that compelled you to engage in one way or another, that is one perfect example. More often, this content comes in the form of a survey, social media polls, quizzes, games, or interactive maps.

Why Invest in Interactive Content?

Modern-day marketers leverage interactive and personalized content everywhere, from landing pages and blog posts to social media channels. Here’s how using this content will enhance your marketing plan:

Better Insights into Consumer Preferences 

With interactive content, you can leverage the data obtained from quizzes, polls, and surveys to understand your audience’s engagement rates. This understanding helps you tailor your content to your audience’s preferences, resulting in more effective marketing and lead nurturing.

Boosts Conversion Rates

Since interactive elements demand user engagement, your target audience is more likely to take action. Brands like IKEA and Facebook have used interactive elements, such as virtual and augmented reality, to increase their reach and achieve higher click-through rates. If implemented correctly, interactive content can also be useful in your senior living marketing campaigns.

Unleashes Creativity 

The opportunities for creativity with interactive content are limitless. With these elements, you can create a unique brand experience that sets you apart from the competition. Many interactive and evergreen content pieces have reusable value, meaning consumers may return to engage with the content multiple times, driving continued engagement.

Improves Audience’s Experience 

Interactive and highly personalized content can enhance a prospective customer’s experience by providing useful information or tools that can help solve their problems. By providing valuable interactive resources, you can strengthen your authority in your industry and build a more loyal audience.

Better Brand Awareness

Interactive, branded content can help drive brand awareness by providing viewers with a unique, memorable experience. As more people find value in your content, they’re more likely to share it on social media, generating word of mouth and referrals.

Levels up Your SEO Game

Interactive content can help improve your website’s SEO by encouraging visitors to engage with it. As a result, the time visitors spend on your site increases, signaling to search engines that your content is engaging, informative, and of high value.

Interactive Content Strategies to Consider

If you want to enhance your inbound marketing strategy, tap into the various interactive content strategies. From polls to interactive landing pages, these strategies can help engage consumers, collect information, and increase sales. Here’s what to implement and how:


Quizzes or surveys are fun and engaging forms of interactive and personalized content that are becoming increasingly popular in inbound marketing. They are commonly used to educate, engage and entertain the audience, and when done creatively, they have a good chance of going viral.

For instance, social media polls and surveys offer an effective way to encourage audience participation on a given topic. The quizzes can capture valuable insights into the audience’s maturity in the subject matter and can help boost your inbound marketing strategies.

Interactive Infographics

Approximately 1 in 3 marketers admit that attracting user intention is their biggest marketing challenge. That is why interactive infographics have become increasingly popular in recent years. Unlike static or traditional infographics, interactive types use buttons, statistics, and quizzes to grab the audience’s attention and engage them deeper.

These infographics keep the readers on your site longer, increasing the chances that they will convert into leads or customers. The interactive elements also make your content more shareable, which can lead to increased brand awareness and improved search engine rankings.

And while creating interactive infographics may require more time and resources than traditional infographics, the benefits can be worth it. By providing an immersive experience for your audience, you build a stronger relationship and stand out in a crowded digital landscape.

Interactive Landing Pages

In today’s highly competitive digital landscape, interactive landing pages have become a crucial element of inbound marketing. The goal of a landing page is to generate conversions. Adding interactivity to landing pages can trigger a visitor’s desire, increasing engagement and the likelihood of conversion.

Interactive landing pages enable visitors to engage and participate, creating a unique user experience that differentiates your website from competitors. Thoughtfully incorporating visual and animated content will enhance your landing pages. This increases click-through rates and ultimately generates more leads.

The above techniques are a few interactive content marketing strategies you can implement in your business. Other options include the use of interactive tools such as calculators, interactive PDFs, interactive videos, interactive presentations, etc.

Bottom Line

For the longest time, inbound marketing has become integral to nearly all major businesses and industries. The simple reason for this is that, unlike advertising, inbound marketing focuses on creating value for the prospect and building long-term relationships. However, competition is quickly catching up, and marketers turn to interactive elements to make their marketing techniques more creative and innovative.

When creating interactive content, it’s vital to take a customer-centric approach. That means understanding the audience’s needs and preferences and creating content and experiences that speak directly to them.

50 Most Powerful Call-to-Action Phrases

Are you looking to increase your conversion rate? Call-to-Actions are an essential part of the conversion process, but what kinds of Call-to-Actions should you put on your website? CTAs should be simple yet effective, and should catch the attention of your visitors. The formula for a successful CTA page title consists of combining such sales buzzwords as “free,” “discount,” “offer,” “gift,” “guarantee,” with action-oriented words like “click,” “download,” “request,” and “send.” Listed below are 50 powerful Call-to-Action phrases that visitors can’t resist clicking on.

50 Powerful Call-to-Action Phrases

  1. Download now
  2. Click here
  3. Join now
  4. Download here
  5. Start now
  6. Click here for details
  7. I urge you to…
  8. Get a free…
  9. Talk to an expert
  10. Immediate download
  11. While supplies last
  12. Money back guarantee
  13. Money back guarantee, no questions asked
  14. Get it now!
  15. Act quickly
  16. Free shipping
  17. Shipping discount
  18. Come in for a free consultation
  19. Come see us today
  20. Reserve your spot now
  21. Come in today
  22. Start your trial
  23. Start your free trial
  24. Offer expires…
  25. Satisfaction guaranteed
  26. We’d like to hear from you
  27. I can’t wait to hear from you
  28. Limited availability
  29. Limited time offer
  30. Best value
  31. For more details call…
  32. Please don’t hesitate to call
  33. We’re waiting for your call!
  34. Send for our free brochure
  35. Send for our free catalog
  36. Subscribe to our email list
  37. Subscribe to our newsletter
  38. Send in your application today!
  39. Apply here
  40. Order now and receive a free gift
  41. Tell us what you think
  42. Take our quiz!
  43. Sign up online at…
  44. Get started today
  45. Request your FREE quote today
  46. Just reach for your phone
  47. Members only/Subscribers only
  48. Contact us
  49. It’s important that you respond promptly
  50. Download our eBook for more information

Click here to learn more about powerful CTA phrases that increase clicks!

Now that you know what attention-grabbing Call-to-Actions look like, you can implement your own. Don’t just copy and paste the CTA phrases from the list above. Tweak the CTA phrases so that they apply specifically to your company and your products and/or services. For example, instead of just saying, “Start your free trial,” you can say “Start your free trial with (insert company name here) so your CTA is more personalized. Use these phrases/Quotes as a template for your website’s CTAs, sit back, and watch the clicks roll in!

25 Website Must Haves
ingredient branding

What is Ingredient Branding & How Does It Work?

There are many different marketing strategies to employ to increase the value and name recognition of your business. There are traditional marketing strategies, like commercials, billboards, and events. Then there are digital marketing strategies, like social media advertising, contests/giveaways, and community engagement.

Each of these methods can be a great strategy for getting your business name out there, generating new leads and customers, and growing your business. If you’ve been in business for awhile and already have an established business name, then you have some potential advantages for increasing your business’s value and brand recognition. One of these advantages is a strategy marketers call ingredient branding.

What is Ingredient Branding?

Ingredient branding is a marketing strategy where a component of the business is branded as a separate entity. This helps to add more value to the parent company and make their product/service seem superior to its competitors.

You’ve probably seen this strategy in use several times before without even realizing it. Here are a few examples of ingredient branding by large brands:

  • Dodge’s Hemi engines
  • Citgo’s TriCLEAN fuel
  • Dupont’s Teflon
  • Intel’s Intel Inside

Intel Inside is actually credited with the conception of ingredient branding back in the ’90s, and was the first success story of having an ingredient helping to promote their business.

Search Engine Optimization Techniques

How Does Ingredient Branding Work?

Each of these ingredients were developed and branded separately from the main business to make their product seem better. Dodge put together an entire campaign around “That thing got a Hemi?” to help promote the engines they use in their trucks. When Citgo started branding its TriCLEAN fuel, it was able to focus more on the quality of its fuel over its competition, rather than only competing with gas prices.

These two cases are specifically about an already well-known company branding an ingredient that it already uses to help increase value of its product.

But there are other ways that ingredient branding can work. Some products are already ingredients in and of themselves. Let’s think of a few:

  • Tide detergent
  • Arm & Hammer baking soda
  • Splenda sweetener
  • OnStar
  • Oreo

And so many more.

Let’s dive into these examples. Tide detergent is already a well-known brand. However, you’ll often see other cleaning supplies that contain Tide. Since these products know that consumers love Tide detergent, they’ve worked with the company to include Tide as an ingredient and help promote their product.

This works both ways, though. Including Tide as an ingredient in another company’s product, it receives even more promotion for their own brand. So essentially, the financial deal struck between the two companies is mutually beneficial.

Arm & Hammer is another popular ingredient brand. You’ll see products like cat litter, toothpaste, and more that contain Arm & Hammer baking soda. Splenda sweetener is another ingredient brand that consumers will commonly see promoted among other products.

Back to vehicles, customers see OnStar’s security service as an amenity when buying a car. This means that customers will pay more for a car with this feature installed, which can be pretty valuable for an automaker.

And finally, Oreo is a popular cookie that is sometimes used as an ingredient in other products, like cookies and cream ice cream, McDonald’s McFlurries, and coffee flavoring.

Learn more about 7 Steps To Launching a Packaging Brand

Can Ingredient Branding Help Your Business?

If your business isn’t prominent enough to be branded as an ingredient, perhaps your business is one that can benefit from including an ingredient in its product or service. By including a well-known ingredient in your business model, you’re able to promise a level of quality that is already well-known to consumers.

One example of an ingredient in the digital marketing world is social media scheduling tool Buffer. If possible, many new SaaS companies in the digital marketing will offer Buffer integration with their service because they know how popular Buffer is.

Offering a well-known ingredient in your product or service can be a great way to promote your product to consumers who already use that ingredient in other products.

Ingredient branding is a great way to provide more value and marketability to your business. What are some popular ingredient brands that you’ve heard of?

brand development

4 Essential Brand Components

There’s a common misconception that many people have that a “brand” is basically just the name of the company and the logo that they use. While these elements contribute to the overall brand of a business, the term “brand” is actually much more comprehensive than that. It involves many different components, which is why it takes a lot of thought in order to successfully develop your brand. The following are the four main brand components that you will need to address when building your brand and what kinds of strategies you can put into place to further develop those components.

1. Brand Identity

Your brand identity is how you want your brand to be perceived. It’s important that you know what your brand identity is and what you want it to be. If you don’t, how is anyone else supposed to know? You’re going to have a tough time generating brand awareness if you lack a strong brand identity. The following are a few steps that you should take to establish your brand identity:

  • Identify your mission

    What was the reason you established your company in the first place? What is your company’s goal? Consumers want to know what your mission is (and they don’t want to hear that it’s “to make a profit”) and it will reflect who you are as a company.

  • Establish your unique value proposition

    Your unique value proposition is what sets you apart from your competitors. It’s a statement of how your offer benefits your customers, how you will meet the needs of your customers, and what makes your offer unique. Every marketing campaign you run should align with your unique value proposition.

  • Create your brand’s visual identity

    The visual elements of your brand certainly factor into your brand identity. Just consider the logos and color palettes of some of the biggest companies out there, from Facebook’s simple logo and use of blue to McDonald’s golden arch and yellow and red palette. A strong logo that’s instantly recognizable is important, but so is choosing your colors. Different colors have different meanings and the colors you choose can have a psychological impact on your audience as well. For example, many fast-food restaurants use red and yellow because that combination of colors is thought to stimulate the appetite. Just keep in mind that consistency is key. If you decide to use shades of blue in your logo and on your website, then you should use those same colors for your social media pages, email newsletters, and physical location as well.

  • Increase brand recognition

    It’s going to take some time to get your vision of your brand identity out to the masses. You’ll want to generate awareness of your brand to do this through a variety of marketing efforts, such as building a website that emphasizes your mission and unique value proposition, creating content that’s optimized for SEO, using social media to engage with consumers and to post your content, and more. It’s also vital that you make sure your mission, unique value proposition, and visual identity are consistent across all platforms. If it’s not, it will end up hurting your brand identity.

2. Brand Image

Your brand image is similar to your brand identity in that it deals with how your brand is perceived. However, whereas your brand identity is how you want your brand to be perceived, brand image is how your brand is actually perceived. Consider your brand image as the reputation you currently have with the general public. Take for example United Airlines. Not long ago, they updated their brand design in an attempt to strengthen their brand identity as a “thoughtful, modern, and innovative airline.” However, their brand identity and brand image are currently quite different from each other after numerous massive PR failures regarding their customer service. Keeping that in mind, the following are a few ways to build and maintain a positive brand image:

  • Spread your message via PR

    Use public relations to spread your key messages as well as relevant news concerning your company. You can do this through news outlets, trade publications, and even online blogs. Public relations will help you raise awareness of your brand and what you’re doing, thereby helping to improve your brand image.

  • Establish a social presence

    Social media is an incredibly effective way to build your brand image, whether it’s by sharing content with consumers, keeping consumers up to date on the latest news and product launches, spreading awareness of your message, and engaging with consumers on a personal level. In fact, you can even use social media to address negative comments. It’s a good way to repair potential damage done to your brand image as a result of a poor customer experience by showing that you care and trying to correct the situation.

  • Create high-quality content

    Content will help to increase brand awareness by bringing in more web traffic. However, it can also help to build your brand authority. By publishing content that is relevant to your company and to your audience (and that’s of high quality), you’ll become a trustworthy source of information, which — in turn — will help improve your reputation and increase brand trust.

Download Our White Paper Guide To Learn How To Perfect Buyer Personas For Your Business

3. Brand Culture

Brand culture refers to your company’s core values and how you set an example for those values. Businesses have always

emphasized certain values; however, those values were often things like “reliability” or “honesty.” Values that are more equivalent to basic ethics. While those are important values to hold onto, more and more businesses have begun taking moral stances as well as political stances in addition to generally accepted values. These types of values feed into your brand culture as well. Take Nike for example. They have taken strong social positions by running commercials backing Colin Kaepernick and recently touting the importance of the women’s U.S. soccer team’s World Cup win. These are branding efforts touting their championing of equality, which has become a part of their brand culture. The following are a few tips to help you establish your brand culture:

  • Define your values

    Define exactly what your values are and how your company lives out those values. Don’t be afraid of taking a stance if there’s a particular stance that you want to take. Using the Nike example again, their backing of Kaepernick was considered controversial and plenty of consumers did not agree with their position. However, those that did agree with their position became even more strongly aligned with Nike’s brand. You can’t please everyone, but by sticking to your values, you’ll be more likely to strengthen your relationship with many of your customers.

  • Spread awareness of your values

    Let consumers know about your values by declaring them on your website or by encouraging discussion about your values on social media. Publishing content that backs your values is an effective method as well.

  • Ensure that your company reflects your values

    There’s nothing consumers hate more than a hypocrite. If you’re flaunting your support for equal pay across social media and in your marketing efforts, then you better be practicing what you preach. Your brand culture is incredibly dependent on your ability to embrace your own values within your company.

4. Brand Personality

Your brand personality refers to the human characteristics that your company has. Developing a brand personality is vital to connecting with your audience on an emotional level and for making your brand relatable. Because of this, make sure that you use the following tips to develop your brand personality:

  • Learn who your audience is

    Understanding your audience is something that you need to do from the very beginning. It’s an important step in building your brand identity as well. However, it’s particularly important when it comes to developing your brand personality. The way you present yourself and the way that you communicate should reflect not only who the audience is but what they expect. For example, if you have a younger audience, then a dry, formal tone may not resonate with them. However, if your audience is older, using younger slang and current pop culture references may go over their heads.

  • Engage with your audience

    While you can get your personality across in the content you write, it’s easier to do through engaging with people. It’s why using social media is so important. Your entire audience sees your interactions and it helps establish your personality a certain way. For example, Wendy’s has a reputation for having a playful personality because of their use of humor and the pretend feuds that they get into with other brands on Twitter.

  • Be consistent in tone

    If you’re going to be funny and informal on one platform, you need to make sure that personality carries over to all of the other platforms you use, both online and offline. If you’re inconsistent, it will hurt your ability to develop a cohesive brand personality, which will only confuse your audience.

These are the four main brand components that you will need to address when developing your brand strategy. A strong brand requires a strong brand identity, brand image, brand culture, and brand personality. Implementing a successful brand strategy that develops all four of these components increases brand trust, loyalty, and awareness.

The Strategic Difference Between Branding and Marketing and How They Work Together

People often use branding and marketing interchangeably, but the two are distinctly different. Knowing how they differ is crucial to executing specific campaigns with branding or marketing goals.

Neil Patel says that “where marketing ends, branding begins.” The implication is that branding and marketing are crucial to your business’ success. So, don’t emphasize one at the expense of the other. This guide explores how they are distinct and how to leverage both to gain a competitive edge.

What is Branding?

Branding entails shaping your business identity. It gives your business character and provides a complete narrative of what you offer your customers, why you do it, and where it leads. It also entails defining your target audience, how you communicate to them, and the meaning it adds to their experience with your business.

While you can visually represent your brand through visual elements like your color palette, logo, and fonts, your brand is generally the overall experience you deliver to your customers. Think of it this way:

  • Coca-Cola is more than just soda
  • Starbucks is more than just coffee
  • Nike is more than just sportswear
  • Apple is more than just computers

These brands deliver experiences in addition to the products you buy. The brands know the experience their customers want to have when they consider a purchase. So, they continually invest in brand marketing to cultivate their brands.

How to Determine Your Business Brand?

The practice of shaping your brand identity requires that you clearly define the following:

  • Your business’s core values and principles: What matters most to your company? What are you committed to, such as saving the world with eco-friendly strategies or equality for all customers?
  • Your mission statement: Apart from making money, what else do you want to accomplish with your business?
  • Customer experience: What feelings do you want to inspire in your customers when they interact with your business?
  • Your unique selling proposition: How can you deliver something different from your competitors?
  • Your brand personality: What language do you use with your customers? Is the tone fun, intelligent, creative, or casual?
  • How do you highlight the right ideas: What comes to mind when customers hear your business name, and what do they associate it with?

Your brand tells your customers what they can expect from your business. It gives them a glimpse into what to expect when interacting with your services and products. With a clearly defined brand, you gain more clarity and direction for your marketing activities.

What is Marketing?

Marketing is a mix of activities and tactics you undertake to promote your brand, products, or services. The actions communicate your company’s benefits and what it offers, different from your competitors. The primary goal of the activities is to generate interest and influence the audience to buy from you instead of the competition.

The greater focus of marketing is sales rather than branding. The activities have a shorter timeframe, also known as marketing campaigns. Marketing strategies have a call to action to buy or take a step towards a purchase.

Examples of marketing activities include the following:

  • Search engine optimization
  • Social advertising
  • Content promotion
  • Promotional emails
  • Pay-per-click advertising
  • Print campaigns and direct mail

The Difference Between Branding and Marketing

Your brand is your business culture, the message you send to your audience about your business. It also entails the rules that govern your business. On the other hand, marketing is a set of processes and tools to promote your brand. It uses social media, SEO, mobile, traditional marketing, and local search marketing tools. If branding is the author, marketing is the publisher.

Your business needs a brand to differentiate itself from the competition. However, even the strongest brand can only succeed by constantly marketing itself, demonstrating its unique selling proposition to its target audience.

Other highlights of the differences between marketing and branding are:

  • Branding comes before marketing
  • Marketing boosts sales, while branding enhances customer loyalty
  • Marketing is the bait that attracts your audience’s attention, while branding is the glue that keeps it intact
  • Marketing strategies are dynamic and keep changing, but your branding is there to stay
  • Branding impacts your business internally and externally, but marketing is more of an external factor

How Branding and Marketing Work Together

In recent years, there has been an emphasis on the importance of customer experience in branding. It shifts the focus from design elements associated with the brand, such as the company logo, color palette, or messaging.

Once your target audience sees your logo, they may be intrigued or feel a connection to your brand. However, you must do more to generate interest in the customer for them to purchase. That’s where marketing comes in.

While marketing and branding are two distinct components of your business, they rely on each other. Depending on how you apply them together, they can contribute to the success of your business.

Your brand marketing strategies will benefit from having a solid brand at the beginning. The marketing efforts can focus on highlighting what makes your brand unique. As people become familiar with your brand and what it stands for, they can identify with your brand marketing message. A good branding strategy sets up your marketing campaign for success.

Blending Your Branding and Marketing Strategies

Both branding and marketing need your attention to help your business succeed. Creating a solid brand early in business life is beneficial in creating clear and consistent brand characteristics. Then, it becomes less stressful to develop brand marketing strategies to take the business to the next level.

Both branding and marketing are more than one-off events and require ongoing effort. A professional brand marketing agency can work with you to fine-tune your strategies. Steven & Tate is a branding and marketing company that can help you blend your branding and marketing for overall business success. Talk to our experts to learn more.