Business Branding Tools for 2013

By Stacy Zemon, Publisher & Chief Scribe

Your brand is a value proposition. It is what people expect to get when they book your DJ service. It is the promise of certain benefits both material and experiential, and immediate and forthcoming. It is also a promise that the benefits your clients receive will be worth the price they have paid.

A brand and branding are not the same. Branding is the strategy marketers use to build a brand. Branding sets expectations about the value proposition that is a brand.

As you review these brand-building tools, consider how you will incorporate them into your strategies to increase your DJ service’s influence and brand value in 2013.

Customization

More and more sites are making real customization a key feature of their offerings. YouTube, for example, lets you pick the color palette for your channel, and other social networking sites provide a structured template for members to create a personalized profile. LinkedIn allows you to change the order of the content and to easily personalize your profile with videos, images, documents, and presentations.

Also check out platforms like About.me, flavors.me and Zerply, which provide a one-of-a-kind home on the web.

Mobile

A great way to make your mark and increase brand awareness is to create an iPhone app. Give it away for free and market it to your target client base. Make sure it offers potential users enough benefits to get and use it, and offer an incentive to sign up for your email list.

Your app should match your brand with a matching icon with your logo and colors. The app itself should be something your target market would want to use. For instance, your app could give prospects and clients tips and incentives each day. With a little thought you can create an app that both represents your brand, encourages purchasing, as well as makes your clients and potential clients remember you every time they use the app.

Pictures

Graphic designers, architects, and artists have always used portfolios of images to showcase their work. Now, you can too.

Pinterest pinboards enable you to express your brand and your passions through images. Prezi lets you use pictures on an interactive whiteboard to convey your point of view and share thought leadership with others.

LinkedIn is using images to make your profile more visually interesting. Its inserting the logos of your mobile entertainment service into the company you work for. In addition, it now supports integrating images and presentations into your profile so you can share your thousand words’ worth of image with your network contacts.

QR Codes

You can see QR codes on billboards, print ads, coffee mugs – and, most recently, on business cards, and in all kinds of correspondence.

Business QR codes and Microsoft Tag barcodes are essential; they let you instantly share your mobile business card, and they send real-time text or email alerts whenever someone scans your code, including your company’s name, type, and location. You can even get a custom QR code printed on a T-shirt to help direct people you meet to your website.

Validation

Unless you have completely gone off the grid, you have likely noticed a new feature of Linked In: Endorsements. In fact, you have likely received endorsements or you’ve been asked to provide them.

LinkedIn knows that external feedback comes with credibility that is hard to build when the one talking about you is you. This recent change is part of a larger trend, in the form of feedback from others, that helps us validate and reinforce what we say about ourselves.

Delivering on your brand promise every day helps others understand who you are and what makes you exceptional – and makes it easier for them to provide consistent, accurate feedback about you.

Vlogs and Video

Over the past couple of years, vLogs have become an important promotional and advertising tool for DJ services – and, creating, posting, sharing, and promoting your videos has become extremely easy.

YouTube is a no-brainer, and Vimeo and Ustream have their virtues, as well. But, did you know that you can add video to your LinkedIn profile using SlideShare? Just click on the video symbol while editing your profile, provide the URL of your video… and presto: embedded video.

Every aspect of creating and using video has become much easier! Google+ Hangouts makes real-time group video conferences a snap. Services from videoBIO allow you to quickly create, edit, and post professional videos. They also offer a service that enables you to produce videos and embed them into email, allowing you to deliver a branded and differentiated message.

Wrap Up

I hope you have found some of these trends relevant to you, and I also hope you make plans to incorporate them into your business branding strategy for 2013!

For more business branding tools and ideas, check out what’s inside our Knowledge Bank.

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