The image you associate with your company's product or service -- known as the brand -- needs to be unique if you wan to set yourself apart from the competition.
- Step 1: Strive for consistency in your brand's message. If you send out conflicting signals to your customers, the result will be confusion.
- Step 2: Make sure the people who represent your brand are attuned to your brand values. Customer service is far and away the most important aspect in setting your brand apart from the competition.
- FACT: Ad agency founder David Ogilvy once defined a brand as “The intangible sum of a product’s attributes: its name, packaging, price, its history, its reputation, and the way it's advertised."
- Step 3: Keep your brand's reputation spotless. Don't allow your brand to be associated with any activities that might hurt it. Keep it bright and shining -- and well-defined -- in your customers' eyes.
- Step 4: Link up with your customers -– both online and offline. Sponsor unique events where your customers can interact with your brand.
- TIP: If you have a service brand, make sure the level of service you offer is better than what the competition offers.
- Step 5: Consider creating a unique mascot for your brand. It will give your customers an instant visual association.
- TIP: The image of Santa Claus as a jolly fellow in a red suit began as a creation by Coca-Cola.
- Step 6: Establish uniqueness with a strong selling point. This will help you develop a voice that your customers will recognize.