Biggest Branding Bang…Smallest Branding Buck
Is it possible to spend your way to branding success? If you’re a huge fast moving consumer goods company, the answer is “maybe.” As a small business like a dental practice, it’s an unequivocal “no.”
Branding involves building an ongoing relationship with your patients and prospects. In most cases, your target market cannot be strong-armed into engaging your practice through the water boarding of marketing impressions and in-your-face advertising.
For small businesses, branding is much less about spending money and more about “blocking and tackling”—the fundamentals that will advance your brand in your target marketplace.
So, how do you get the biggest branding bang for the smallest branding buck? Here are four fundamentals that will help your dental brand establish further footholds in your market and increase awareness of your services and treatments without breaking the bank.
1) Know your brand
If you can’t say, right now, without referencing your website or pulling your brochure out of a file drawer, exactly what your brand essence is—the one thing that makes your practice different and relevant to your target market—you have some work to do. Once you know what your dental brand stands for, LIVE IT! Incorporate your brand promise into every patient touch point and into everything you do and say.
2) Focus on your patient and their results
Know who your client is and know how your dental brand will resonate with your target market. Engage with your patients and provide the services and treatments THEY need while focus on the results and impacts that you can provide (like oral health, self-confidence, and happiness).
3) Be consistent, be patient
Successful brands are not built overnight. As a small business, you need to develop a long-term perspective. Be the same practice a year from now as you are today. That doesn’t mean you can’t grow, adapt, change, and adjust. It DOES mean portraying a consistent face—and promise—to your target market. Your marketing efforts will yield better results when cultivated over a period of time. This takes patience but the return on investment will be worth it.
4) Integration is key
Dental practices that integrate their brand essence into everything they do—ads, web sites, brochures, logo, team communications, and more—can exponentially leverage their efforts. Make sure that you dramatize your key benefit and link it directly to your dental brand, then integrate your value proposition into all your marketing communications.
Branding for your small business in NOT about spending more money to create brand awareness. It’s about practicing the fundamentals. Review your marketing communications efforts. Do you really know your brand? Are you focused on your patient? Are your marketing and communication consistent? Have you integrated your brand essence into everything you do?