7 Steps To Differentiate Your Brand From The Crowd

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With a multitude of new companies entering the market every day, it's hard to make your startup stand out. We'll share 7 tips that will give your brand an edge.

Nowadays, it feels like everyone and their mother has a business. Startups are springing up left and right and the market is so oversaturated that it’s getting harder and harder to stand out and really differentiate yourself. So, it doesn’t come as a surprise that it’s really worth studying what it is that successful brands do – even if it’s true that each brand is unique, it’s useful to have a couple of techniques up your sleeve that have proven to work well for others. Without further ado, here are seven tips that will help you differentiate your brand from the rest in the crowd.

#1 Find Your Specific Target Audience

While this sounds straightforward at first, it cannot be stressed enough that for any further operations, you first need to find and analyze your exact target audience. For example, nowadays, it almost seems like everything is marketed towards millennials, so if you don’t want to be “just another brand”, it might pay off to find an underserviced audience instead, depending on your industry. While it’s true that this will limit the pool of people that will be interested in your products or services, there will also be less competition so it’ll be easier for you to stand out. If you find this too risky, just focusing on a target demographic is already a good first step. You would be surprised how many new businesses think their products or services are “for everyone”.

#2 Come Up With Original Content

When building your brand and online presence, it is extremely important to have original content. From your logo and your photos to your blog posts, cheap designs and stock photos just won’t cut it. Neither will designs that clearly remind you of another, well-known brand. Instead, find talented people who will do the designs and write content for you, so that you are always serving top-quality. If you can offer something of value to your potential customers, be it an original, informative blog post or interesting photography, they will be likely to choose your brand over another, more generic one.

#3 Be The First

Following trends is easy. However, being the first one to implement something is far from a walk in the park, but it can take you one step closer to your brand stand out from the crowd. Staying on the cutting edge of technology and being in the know of new, potential innovations that can become big can give you a considerable advantage. So always do your homework and read relevant publications. If, for example, there is a new, convenient payment method just emerging, be the first one to integrate it. Never settle for dated technology.

#4 Explore New Fields

Two things that can also help you differentiate your brand are specialization and expansion. Specialization is in line with focusing on a narrower target audience; if you go in a direction where there is a dire need for your products or services and no other company that provides exactly the same, you can rest assured your brand will be one of a kind. However, expanding your services into a new direction can also make you unique. This is best achieved by creating partnerships. Take Crayola, for example, which recently teamed up with another company and launched a makeup line. It’s completely out of their usual field, but it is certainly different. And didn’t everyone want to try their products right away?

#5 Customers In The Center

In the world of business, there is nothing more important than customers. That’s why you can really stand out and make a name for yourself if you offer premium, personal customer experience. However, this, again, is something that is unique for each brand, so you should try out different things to find what works for you. For example, you should leverage customer information to better tailor the experience to each of your customers, but you should also try to keep this low key. Always focus on improving your services in a way that will make a change for your customers. Also, keep in mind that nothing beats personal customer service.

#6 Get Branded

Undeniably, one of the most prominent distinguishing features of a brand is its symbols: logos, slogans, colors, designs, etc. These basically represent you in the eye of the public, so it is essential that you pick the right ones. Think of, for example, the color red. Coca-Cola came to mind right away, didn’t it? Now, once you have this sorted out and want to show that you are in it for the long run, it’s worth looking into means of proper protection. So, don’t shy away from implementing patents or applying for a trademark, depending on which of your assets you are looking to secure. However, regardless of whether you have proper protection or not, problems can occur – intellectual property disputes are far from rare. In those cases, your brand’s reputation might potentially suffer, which can deal a serious blow to your entire business. In that case, your best option is to turn to a professional intellectual property lawyer who will sort things out for you.

#7 And Finally: Be You

Finally, it might sound like a cliché, but the most important thing in order to differentiate yourself is to be you. Your goal is to find customers that share your values, isn’t it? Being personal and sharing your “human” side, maybe even your story and your background will help with getting closer to your customers. Everyone loves narratives, after all. And since everyone’s story is unique, showing yourself will certainly give your brand a personal touch.

And the list goes on. There are many more ways in which you can differentiate your brand from others, so do some research and decide which strategies are best suited to your brand.



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