Brand management for B2B firms is more important than ever before due to digitization and social media proliferation and the subsequent need for consistent and relevant marketing messaging.
What’s in a Brand?
Your brand defines who you are and what you do, while also setting you apart from others like you. It emphasizes the unique value that your professional service or B2B business offers your clients. It’s the reason they choose to work with you and not another company. Your brand is communicated through everything your company does, from its design motifs and logo to the services and promotions it offers.
Online Brand Management
It takes a great deal of effort to maintain an online presence but the branding benefits are well worth it. You need to know what’s going on with your brand and use the internet to leverage the exposure it offers.
Branding is the process of building your brand, while brand management is the process of monitoring and maintaining it. Brand management helps those in the B2B industry to build a good corporate image and position in the market. Without proper brand management not only will your brand lose its value but you will lose clients to popular competitors.
Search engine optimization is important for online branding. You need to make sure that your website and social media profiles come up in searches related to your service. When people encounter your brand, whether in print or in person, they’re going to head straight to Google and see what else they can find out about you. Put a proactive SEO strategy into place and make sure you’re ranking for relevant keywords.
Email is Still Number One
Although there are now many ways to communicate online, email is still the main mode of communication for professional service firms. It’s good to build an email list and market directly to your list members’ inboxes. This is a good way to enhance your branding and the personal nature of email makes it excellent for creating an emotional bond.
The World of Social Media
We touched social media earlier, but don’t forget that social media is much more than just Facebook and Twitter. It includes video sharing sites like YouTube, blogs, industry specific social networking sites, online forums and more.
It’s especially important to leverage the power of review sites like LinkedIn groups and professional directories?. Join as many of these groups as possible and manage them well. Encourage your clients to leave good reviews and watch for bad reviews so that you can respond to them in a timely manner.
Content marketing is a critical component of brand building. Content marketing is a strategy in which you regularly publish articles, blog posts, videos or other content that helps your target market. It’s a great way to gain exposure and communicate your brand message. Remember that content should be timely, relevant, and valuable to your audience.
Online Reputation Brand Management
It’s possible that someone is going to say something bad about your company online and it’s inevitable that many others will see it. This is why you need reputation management protocols in place. When a complaint or negative comment is posted about your brand, you need to swing into action and handle it with the best approach possible.
A proactive method of protecting your reputation online is to encourage good reviews and positive comments. When you have a great number of good reviews on a site like platform like Facebook, or Google, a few bad ones aren’t so damaging.
Whenever responding to negative comments, remember to stay “on-brand.” Never get angry. Your handling of the situation should give others who see the interaction the right brand message. How you respond to these situations is as much a part of your brand marketing as any other activities you engage in.
Reviews are essential in the B2B industry. Any professional service or technology firm needs social proof in order to gain new clients. Form relationships with reviewers and review websites and encourage your clients to leave reviews. As briefly mentioned already, word of mouth is the best possible branding you could hope for.
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