Building a brand with innovative baby steps
SME entrepreneurs need to build personal and business brands simultaneously
Guest Blog by Raj K. Pathak
Guest Blog by Raj K. Pathak
Creating right form of awareness among the target customer base often becomes challenging. For small businesses this is considered as a major challenge for their business growth.
I came across a small business entrepreneur from a small town of India, who is into the business of body care products like soaps, hand washes, shampoos etc. His vision for business expansion was very limited. He was sure that his products will face tough heat from well-established products from some of India’s leading FMCG companies. His only argument was that his products cannot pull new customers because he has no budgets for expensive advertising and marketing.
This is a common perception that most small business brands face. What most brands do wrong is that they refuse to invest time and energy in actually creating a brand identity that goes beyond logos and taglines. Brands identity is how a product or service communicates with the world outside and therefore it must understand changing consumer expectations.Brands have to be relevant at all times and cannot live in exile.
Undoubtedly, the conventional methods for brand development and building are expensive. But there are some new methods like experiential marketing, which is very much applicable to FMCG products.
This new marketing technique allows customers to get up, close and personal with the products by engaging them in a more impactful brand experience. These personal experiences help consumers connect to a brand and make intelligent and informed purchasing decisions. It is experiential marketingthat makes all the difference between telling people about features of a product or service and letting them experience its benefits for themselves. When done right, it's the most powerful tool out there to win brand loyalty.
So, once the concept of experiential marketing (and its applicability in the body care products business), became clear to my friend he implemented this at a smaller level and got glued to this method as it gave him promising results.
He sent few of his young and energetic employees to his city’s crowded shopping mall, cinema houses and shopping places, and his employees interacted with common consumers and gave them free samples. Consumers gave a promising response by recommending the product and the ball got rolling. Although it was the local market which started showing a sudden increase in his revenue figures, but sooner or later he will be able to replicate the same model in other cities also where he wants to increase his sales.
The revenue got increased by close to 200% within couple of quarters.
Experiential marketing adds another dimension of feel. And By allowing consumers to feel the product the impact of the brand becomes promising. Touch and feel experience is all the more relevant in Indian market.
Some large companies are also using experiential marketing, but they are doing it on a larger scale. However, smaller companies can also leverage this practice by taking baby steps starting from the local city, region and then expanding it into the bigger horizon.
Building brand must not be a me-too idea where specific brand’s identity can show signs of influence from any competing brand. So the only differentiating factor is genuine innovation.
And then few baby steps, a little practice and lo the brand starts walking and running!
Entrepreneurship as a subject has always excited Raj ever since he started his career in media. Promoting Entrepreneurship among youth by using media such as TV,Radio,Print ,Online & Events is his deep passion. He is well known for his 2 major media projects to promote entrepreneurship in the country namely BUSINESS MANTRA TV Show s & SME CEO Knowledge Series -first of its kind 360 degree media event for SME sector. To know more visit www.rajkpathak.com/profile/