Building a brand that people love takes a ton of time and effort. Small business owners must build trust, set trends, and share their customers’ values. Connecting with customers is one of the most important ways to make money.
Success starts close to home. Before connecting with customers, you must build strong bonds with your teammates. Tap or click here for five leadership secrets every small business owner should know.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, keep reading. Kim started her brand from the ground up and learned many tough lessons along the way. Here are some of her most significant pieces of advice for any small business owners who want to grow and earn more customer loyalty.
1. Choose a solid and memorable brand name
Pick a name that rolls off the tongue. You also want to pick a name that inspires good feelings in whoever is talking about your business. There’s a lot of psychology at play.
A 2006 study scanned people’s brains to see how they responded to name brands. Researchers made a shocking discovery. Brand names trigger more of an emotional response than other words.
A more recent study found that favorite brands activate two brain regions. These aren’t just any brain regions: They’re the parts that are important for developing close interpersonal relationships. Scientific American shares all the details.
You can use this knowledge to your advantage
Here’s the main takeaway. When we talk about brands, we process the brand name through the more emotional parts of our brains.
As a small business owner, you can influence your customers’ emotions. You can use that power for good — and profit. Sadly, there’s no one-size-fits-all formula for a good brand name. Here’s our advice:
- Do some soul-searching.
- Invest in research to find a good name.
- Be original without being esoteric.
If you’re stuck, flip through the Merriam-Webster dictionary. You may not find the business name that you stick with. At the very least, it might get the gears turning.
Keep your eyes and ears open for inspiration, and jump on the correct name when it presents itself. If you’re struggling, try an online brand name generator like this. (Remember not to click on any links on generator websites!)
2. Creating a good website is one of the best ways to make more money
SEO is about more than just keywords. Tap or click here for a few ways to optimize your business site. You want a lightweight site so it can quickly load pages.
However, you also want your site to be tight, so visitors aren’t stuck in a glitchy FAQ dropdown. When in doubt, hiring a professional developer for a site audit never hurts. This way, you can see how customers see your site.
Getting an expert’s perspective can shed light on areas you overlook. Kim has done this before. The professional she hired revealed minor frustrations customers had when visiting her site.
Once she understood the complaints, she acted quickly to solve them. The new Komando site is streamlined. It puts user convenience first.
What you can learn from this
You want the customer to be focused on one thing: Your products. The last thing you want is for them to get annoyed by technical issues. You should make your site as easy to use as possible.
You may think extra features on your site, like automatic videos and chatbots, are impressive. Actually, they could make a customer’s time on your site less enjoyable. The less accessible your site is, the fewer sales you’ll make.
Bottom line: If visitors have an easy time using your site, they’re more likely to return. A simple yet elegant site makes customers think well of your brand. It helps you earn their trust and, hopefully, their sales.
3. Step up your mail and social media marketing
There are a few inexpensive ways to drive more traffic to your site. Instead of buying ads, you can learn marketing techniques to generate more eyeballs on your website. Tap or click here for free ways to learn digital marketing.
Organic traffic generation through Google or social media is essentially free advertising. If you win the top spot on the search engine results page (SERP), you could win the sale, too.
The rules are simple:
- Use keywords and phrases to reel customers in.
- Keep your website in good shape.
- Avoid cheap content and duplicate pages.
Avoid all other shady practices, too. Google’s algorithm will punish you for foul play. Tap or click here for Kim’s chat with an SEO expert who explains how to boost your rankings and make more money online.
The same goes for any social media platform on which your brand has a page. Focus on creating great posts in a professional font. You should also have a friendly, approachable tone, so anyone who visits your site feels welcome.
After identifying your core demographic, you can choose the social media platforms most likely to reach your intended customer. For example, young professionals use LinkedIn, while millennials still use Instagram. Boomers tend to be more interested in their Facebook feeds than TikTok’s For You page.
You can pay for ad services on any of these sites. If you’re lucky, you could increase your audience’s brand awareness with a strong content strategy.
4. Bet you didn’t know this: Bartering is one of the top ways to make more money
Sure, you might feel nervous asking for freebies. But partnerships are the backbone of the business industry. The world is full of brands like you doing everything they can to contact customers.
Along the way, small business owners rack up a long list of needs. You might need mass mailer software, for example. When you look up software, consider reaching out to the programmers.
RELATED: 9 free software copycats that work better than the real expensive programs
Getting in touch with other small brands could do you good in the long run. Ask companies with products you want if you can make an arrangement. There’s so much you can offer, like promotional content or freebies for your partners.
As long as both parties are into the deal, everybody ends up better off. So don’t be afraid to reach out. You might feel audacious at first, but it never hurts to ask. Take it from the Komando team. Our site collaborates with several corporate partners. There’s power in numbers, so partner up to save time, money and labor.
5. Find a business mentor
If you admire a brand, we encourage you to reach out for guidance if and when appropriate. Look for a business adjacent to yours. But don’t reach out to direct competition.
For example, you want to reach out to somebody in an alternative market. Of course, you could also find help from a more established business. If it’s a few tiers above yours in scope, leaders might be willing to lend a helping hand. After all, everyone loves an underdog. That might be how they see you.
Most business owners are always interested in making new connections, yourself, ideally, included. The economy is a complex network, and having a few friends on your side always pays. Speaking of friends, use these five apps to meet new pals online.
Best of all, you need good software on your side
This is it. The putt to win the tournament. If you sink it, the championship is yours. But on your backswing, your hat falls over your eyes. Is this how you’re running your business? Poor visibility because you’re still relying on spreadsheets and outdated finance software?
To see the whole picture, you need to upgrade to our sponsor NetSuite by Oracle. Gain visibility and control of your financials, inventory, HR, planning, budgeting and more. With NetSuite, you can automate your processes and close your books in no time while staying well ahead of your competition.
Approximately 93% of surveyed businesses increased their visibility and control after upgrading to NetSuite. Over 31,000 businesses already use NetSuite.
NetSuite has a financing program for those ready to upgrade! Head to NetSuite.com/KIM for this special, one-of-a-kind financing offer on the No. 1 financial system for growing businesses.