06 Jan Some Good, Old & Newfound Rules of Effective Brand Building on the Web
If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell 6 friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6,000 friends. Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon
You don’t need to look too far to measure the greatest impact of brands on the Internet. If you’ve been Googling (instead of searching), if gaining knowledge on a subject is looking up on Wikipedia or if Facebook sounds like social life to you–the existence of brands in your virtual life is quite conspicuous.
Carving a niche in the virtual world can bring you bountiful returns by enhancing your market reach. Here’s a take on turning your brand into a formidable entity on the internet.
With extended brand reach, comes extended responsibility!
Think of your website as a cradle for your brand. It should nurture it and take it forward.Anything inconsistent with the understanding of your brand can be disastrous.The whole construct of brands is based on faith. They ooze with a promise and that’s precisely why we prefer them.
Besides, when you exist on the Internet, it’s important to be careful as you’re vying for people’s attention.
Having a website and a web presence also offers you a chance to explore what’s on the demand side, and see what your consumers want. Apple.com became aware of it early on, that eventually led to its success. Many other successful brands do it too. A few measures can come in handy for living upto your brand image on the Internet-:
1) Simple is compelling– The best known brands have the simplest, most sorted websites you’d ever come across. A design that starts talking right away will have the best penetration and the widest reach. For example Sony.com does it in an inimitable way. It interacts with the viewers through its products. Do not be too flashy. Do you think Sony couldn’t have been flashy in its approach? Well, it just chose not to.
2)Nothing but a good Copy– It’s one of the biggest reasons why organizations hit a home run with their online presence. People have a lot of choice on the Internet. If you can’t surprise or entertain them with good content you’ll lose them instantly. Think of the web as a huge newsstand through which consumers pass by. If your newspaper (read– website) can make someone stop and take a look, you’ve done your job.
3)Be creative, as creative can be– Average viewers love out of the box ideas, but intelligent viewers really dig it. If you’re an eCommerce site or an entity for whom online presence is must, you better be aiming at being creative.Reebok’s website is quite attractive. It talks to you the way a personified Reebok would perhaps speak to you. There are examples of highly creative eCommerce websites too e.g., Dripping in Fat, Me and oli that are really an eye catcher and have a great recall value.
But you must also take your industry into account. If you’re a cut and dry Generator manufacturer, a straight talk should be your best bet.
4)Social is powerful– Social media holds an unprecedented sway today. You can understand how people are perceiving your brand, what’re they saying about it; unlike before, when brands were shoved down their throats. The power has shifted into the hands of the consumer. To cite a small example, Harpoon Brewery, the brewers based out of Boston has a Facebook page through which they send out updates to their fans. The page also serves as a place for discussions amongst its enthusiasts. That’s where you actually build your brand. Actively managed company pages on each, Google+,Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, are not to be missed.
5)Brand plus Business– For a small business, it’s ideal to do both, build your brand and keep your cash register ringing. It’s important to picture your long term (branding) goals but you’ll need finances to sustain. Who knows even more money to pump into brand building.Therefore, in addition to diverting traffic on your brand keywords (as ascertained through keyword research)focus on sales oriented keyword phrases too. Re-check the status after a while, you’ll be clearer about what to do.
Your website should be your pull strategy
The biggest difference between selling and branding is the ‘push’ and ‘pull’ strategy respectively, associated with it. When your brand emerges on the web, it should be persuasive like a magnet, not forceful like a bulldozer.
Your website has to augment the identity of your brand. The experience you offer people has to be emotionally stirring. Successful brands like McDonald’s, Mercedes, Starbucks, Coca Cola etc., know it well. There’s a certain intangible value that has to be brought in to bring that pull into effect. Do something that attracts your customers, something they’d appreciate or expect from you.
The internet offers brands a chance to interact, surprise, even flirt with their customers. It’s important to embrace the change, be flexible and engaging.
It will be even better if there’s a deeper thought behind your web design strategy. During 2012,DC comics alongside revamping its characters got their brand identity redesigned. It was created by the brand consultancy‘Landor’. The redone brand identity was a manifestation of the opposing forces in the world of DC comics‘a thought that perfectly collaborated with the brand.
Lastly, with a surge in mobile devices, there’s a lot more opportunity that awaits you.
So, just go ahead and bring your brand some more attention. As Jay Baer puts it,Every company is its own TV station, magazine, and newspaper.