Is branding only for big guys?

Should every penny SMEs spend on marketing go on traffic initiatives that directly affect turnover?

I know plenty of small business owners who’d say that branding is just for the big guys. They’re enraged with the anecdote that says, “half of all marketing is junk, and half of it works, but you never know which is which until after you’ve paid the money.”

But is it possible in today’s increasingly cookie-enabled world?

Look at all the new outreach programs you’re employing: Facebook, Twitter, blogging, YouTube, Flikr, Foursquare etc. These all cost you money despite being free to sign up, so unless they help you increase turnover, they are marketing exercises not sales initiatives. Or are they the same thing?

Branding with large budgets over traditional channels might still be the preserve of the Big Boys, but branding for the small firm has never been so applicable and opportunistic as it is right now.

[Side note: I agree with Tom Asacker and believe branding to be a reflection of who you are, your business model and how you make customers feel, but this sees the noun branding in a more off-the-shelf manner.]

Photo credit: AON

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