Branding is one of those terms that’s tossed about in marketing conversations, but not everyone truly understands what it means. It’s more than just a logo and the colors scheme you use. Branding is about helping your potential clients know what to expect from your tech business.
Your branding is sets you apart from the competition and projects the personality and expertise of your business and gives people a reason to remember you.
If you don’t pay attention to branding for your company, you run the risk of blending into the background when potential leads are looking for the types of services you offer and missing out on sales.
What is Branding, Exactly?
Branding drives sales and helps position your company as the one someone remembers (and calls!) when their computer crashes in the middle of the workday. But before we start getting into the benefits, let’s talk about what branding actually means.
Branding includes several persona elements that make your company unique. While a logo is one of these, it’s just one part of your “brand.” Key elements of your brand include:
- Your logo
- Your color scheme (used in your logo, website, etc.)
- Your website personality or voice (straight-forward, humorous, etc.)
- Your values statement
- Your slogan
- Your names for products/services
We’ll call all these elements your “brand persona” and once you develop it you should use it consistently across all your marketing.
71% of companies cite customer confusion as the biggest negative element of inconsistent branding.
Why is Branding Your IT Site Important?
What’s the difference between a company that brands themselves well and one that doesn’t? Let’s take a look at two ice cream brands to illustrate the point.
The first example is Ben & Jerry’s. When you hear that name, you’re probably already thinking of a blue sky with fluffy white clouds, and cows on rolling green hills. Their brand evokes feelings of fun, funky, hip, and approachable. Ben & Jerry’s brand is memorable and you can spot it instantly because they’re consistent across all their products with look and style, down to the fun fonts they choose.
Now think of Great Value ice cream, which is the store brand sold by Walmart. Can you remember what the package looks like? How about the types of feelings the ice cream evokes? It’s not as memorable is it? And, the only feeling you may get from it is cheap. That’s because Walmart doesn’t really need to put money into branding their generic products.
You want your tech business to stand out and be a “Ben & Jerry’s” rather than a more forgettable “Great Value.”
Branding is vital to a company and can make a huge impact on their bottom line. Below are reasons that you want to take time developing your company brand.
Makes Your Company Memorable
We’ve already been mentioning this one…and it bears repeating. When a potential customer is searching through computer shops and comparing you with your competitors, you want your company to be the one that is most memorable.
It takes just 10 seconds for a person to form an opinion of a brand, and you can either be the one that evokes positive emotions or the one that’s forgettable. Good branding makes you memorable.
Using branding consistently tells a customer that your company is reliable. If your company is consistent in your branding across all your marketing and customer experiences, then that customer is going to assume you have your act together and are also just as trustworthy and consistent when it comes IT support and service.
Being recognizable and standing out from your competition is going to help you generate more leads and more sales. According to Forbes, consistent branding across all platforms increases revenue by up to 23%.
Encourages Customer Loyalty
A loyal customer can be worth 10 times as much as a single purchase. When you have a specific brand persona, customers enjoy being part of your “tribe” and will tend to be very loyal.
Think about the types of movies you like to watch. If you’re Marvel fan, then you have probably seen multiple movies in the franchise from Iron Man to Black Panther to Captain America. Marvel has a very specific brand and it’s one that fans (comic/ticket/merchandise buyers) are proud to be associated with.
One example of clever IT branding (before they were bought out and watered-down by Best Buy) was the Geek Squad. We saw them spring to popularity when they were young and independent, and their “Men in Black” style was something cool that people wanted to be associated with and stay loyal to.
If you give customers a brand they can hang on to, they’ll be loyal repeat customers, and refer you to others too!
Attracts Top Talent & Fosters Pride
With a brand that makes heads turn, you’ll not only attract new business, you’ll attract top talent as well. This means you can have your pick of the best IT technicians in your area because they’ll want to be associated with your brand.
Great branding also fosters employee pride, which is like a “circle of life” to any business. Happy employees = happy customers = happy business owners.
Helps You Attract Your Ideal Customer
If you brand to match your ideal customer type, then you have a much better chance of attracting them. When you know what your key customer persona for your sales funnel is, work to position yourself as a perfect match for their needs through your branding.
For example, if you are trying to generate more corporate accounts and get away from residential computer services, then a logo showing a computer with a band-aid on it and text headers in comic sans font, won’t help you do that. Instead, you’d want something a bit more professional to attract a business client.
Tips for Branding Your Tech Business Website
So, beyond picking a logo, what should you do to brand your IT business? Here are some tips that can put you on the right track to being memorable.
Be Mindful About Your Color Scheme
Just picking a basic two-color scheme might mean your website looks like a bunch of others to a customer. Be mindful about the colors you choose and do a little research on what colors mean to consumers and how they’ll project your brand voice.
Brand colors improve brand recognition by more than 80%.
Common color psychology:
- Red: Energy, Danger, Action
- Orange: Creativity, Adventure, Enthusiasm
- Green: Money, Health, Generosity
- Blue: Trust, Harmony, Stability
Having a scheme of four colors that are complimentary, will give you plenty of options for your logo, website borders, and other elements. Make sure you use the same exact color code every time you use one of your scheme colors. This will help with recognition and consistency.
Our tip is to pick one color that you really like, find the Hex color code, then use a color scheme generator to generate complimentary colors to fill out your scheme.
Find Your Voice
One of the most important aspects of branding is your voice. That means how you present yourself in print, digitally, and in all the marketing you do. Your voice projects your company’s personality.
Here are two examples of different brand voices (one is friendly with a sense of humor and the other is professional):
Example 1: XYZ Tech is filled with passionate geeks that really know their stuff! Whether you have a computer crash in the middle of a project or are looking for a backup and data recovery plan that works no matter what, we’ve got your back! You bring the pizza, and we’ll bring the IT talent!
Example 2: XYZ Tech has Microsoft and Apple Certified technicians with years of experience serving small and medium business IT needs. Whether you have a system that goes down and requires immediate attention or are concerned about secure backup and recovery solutions, our team has the knowhow and expertise to meet any technology demand.
How you present your voice should match your imagery, photos, videos, and other marketing collateral so they all work together in concert to solidify your brand.
Be Consistent Across All Platforms
Consistency of course is vital to building that trust, so you want to ensure you’re using your branding in the same way across all marketing platforms, including:
- In person
- Customer emails
- Social media
- Letterhead, quotes, invoices
- Business cards
It takes a customer approximately 6 to 8 interactions with a brand before they turn into a viable sales lead. You want to solidify your brand and have those leads remember you, and you do that by showing them a consistent company persona with every interaction.
Research Your Competition
The best way to stand out from your competition is to see what their brand personas look like. Go online as if you were your own customer and search for your services to see what competitors come up.
Then visit their websites to see how they present their brand. This can give you ideas on how to hone your own branding and how to stand out from other competing businesses in your area.
Show Off Your Brand
Once you’ve worked hard on your branding, you want to show it off and start getting that recognition going throughout your community. There are several ways you can do this. Here are a few ideas:
- Partner with other local (non-competing) businesses for a flyer or business card swap
- Volunteer as a team and wear matching logo t-shirt or hats
- Give out logo mugs to customers as a thank you gift
- Create sharable content in your brand voice (infographics, eBooks, etc.)
- Offer a series of tech tip videos, all consistently branded
Better Branding = Better Business
The time and attention you put into designing your brand – from the colors to the images to the voice – will definitely be worth it and will make a positive difference in your customer experience, lead generation, and loyalty.
How would you describe your brand? Let us know in the comments!