How to make your brand stand out: Ideas, tips, and strategies
Wondering how to make your brand stand out? You’ve come to the right place. After all, we know a thing or two about effective, impactful branding here at Fabrik.
Most business leaders today know they need more than just a great product or service to make an impact in an increasingly cluttered marketplace. In 2021 alone, there were more than 333.34 million companies worldwide, and that number has only grown since the pandemic.
The world is drowning in competing companies. The only way to really grab the attention of your target audience is to connect with them on an emotional level. That’s where branding comes in.
An effective brand makes you memorable. It’s what sets you apart from all the other small businesses selling similar products or services to you.
The only problem? While anyone can create the elements of a brand (like a logo, color palette, or impactful business name), few can make a brand truly iconic.
Here’s how you can set your business apart from the crowd.
Why you need to make your brand stand out
At the end of the day, a strong brand identity is everything.
If you don’t know how to make your brand stand out, your company will just get lost in a sea of other, similar companies, competing for the same target audience.
It’s not your products, services, or even your pricing structure that determines whether you’re going to thrive in today’s world. It’s your brand.
While brands are dime a dozen, successful brands are rare. It takes more than a great logo design and a fun social media strategy to excel in the business world. You need a brand that connects with your target audience, builds emotional connections, and conveys your core values.
Learn how to make your brand actually stand out from your competitors, and you unlock the secret to success. Not only will you attract more new customers, but you’ll earn customer loyalty, transform buyers into advocates for your company, and build brand equity.
A brand that stands out sticks in people’s minds, and ultimately, helps you earn more revenue – which is essentially the core goal of any business.
How to make your business stand out: Initial steps
So, how do you make your brand stand out? There are a bunch of strategies you can try – which we’ll cover in this post. However, before you dive into marketing and growth techniques, you need the foundations of a successful brand – a brand strategy.
Your brand strategy is basically the blueprint you use to determine how you’re going to build better relationships with your audience. It covers everything from your brand image to your tone of voice, and even your potential marketing channels.
Here are the first steps you’ll need to take to create a standout business.
1. Choose an unforgettable name
Far too many companies overlook the importance of a good brand name. It’s almost criminal. After all, if your brand’s name doesn’t stand out, how are your customers going to remember you? How will they know what to search for online, or what to talk about with their friends?
Your name sets the stage for your brand story. It should offer an insight into what you do, your brand personality, and the audience you want to serve.
Don’t make the mistake of choosing a business name based on a randomly generated selection of keywords. Think carefully about what you want to convey. Look at Apple, for instance. The name is simple, but it’s steeped in meaning. It reminds us of growth, nourishment, even creativity.
2. Find your brand colors
Color psychology is real. It affects us every day, whether we recognize it or not. Have you ever noticed how your eyes are drawn to certain things on the street, from a bright red “sale” sign to a relaxing blue ocean?
Colors resonate with us. They surface memories and feelings hidden deep within our subconscious. When you see black and white, you think of professionalism and sophistication (probably). When you see orange, you think of zest and creativity.
Be careful with your color choices. Don’t try to convey every type of emotion at once with an endless rainbow of shades. Keep it simple, and stay consistent.
3. Get typography right
Just like colors, typefaces have an impact on how we think and feel. Sans-serif fonts naturally appear friendlier and more modern than their serif counterparts. Bold fonts are powerful and strong, while script and handwritten fonts feel graceful.
Remember, your typography won’t just influence your logo design. It’s also an important consideration when you’re using banners and displays in your marketing strategy, or when you’re designing your website.
4. Nail the logo
It almost goes without saying, but an amazing logo is crucial to making your brand stand out. We remember logos more than virtually any other brand asset – even names.
A great logo is instantly recognizable, and emotionally engaging. Just think of how the Nike swoosh makes you feel like you can accomplish anything. While there are a bunch of “logo generators” in the world today that can give you inspiration, we recommend avoiding them for a great design.
Remember, your brand needs to be unique. If you’re using the same assets anyone else can access online, you’re just not going to stand out.
5. Find your tone of voice
It’s easy to get so caught up in the “image” part of branding that you forget about actually talking to your audience. Your logo design and brand colors might initially grab customer attention. But it’s up to you to deepen that relationship with the right messaging.
So, what’s your brand personality? Are you the fun and quirky type, like Wendy’s? Are you professional and formal, like IBM? There are no right or wrong answers here.
The most important part of choosing your tone of voice is making sure it resonates with the customers you want to reach.
How to make your brand stand out: 13 methods
Now you’ve created the core components of your brand, making sure they all resonate with your customers, and your underlying vision, mission, and values, it’s time to get creative.
Learning how to make your brand stand out means figuring out how to not only make lasting first impressions, but also consistently engage your potential customers.
Here’s how to make your brand stand out, no matter how cluttered your industry is.
1. Dare to be different
It sounds obvious, but your brand can’t stand out if you do the same things as everyone else. As a business owner branching into your landscape for the first time, it makes sense to follow a few best practices. You need marketing strategies, and ways to build brand awareness.
But don’t just follow in the footsteps of the market leaders. Do your own thing.
Give yourself a compass by creating a mission statement that outlines your values and ambitions in your industry.
- What will people get from your products or services?
- Why will people choose you over your competitors?
- How will you treat your target audience?
Using these guidelines, whenever you create a marketing strategy, ask yourself whether you should follow the status quo, or do something different.
2. Find your niche
Even big brands know the answer to “who is your target audience?” can’t just be “everyone”. Yes, you want to reach as many people as possible with your products and services, that’s a given.
But who can really benefit most from whatever you have to offer? If you launch a new brand selling generic items that just anyone could buy, how are you different from anyone else?
Go back to your brand mission and determine who its going to resonate with. For instance, if you’re a fashion brand, are you just going to be selling all kinds of clothes? Or are you going to create sustainable garments that appeal to eco-friendly shoppers?
Do you want to sell items to budget-conscious buyers, or people searching for luxury? What values does your business have, and what kind of people share them?
3. Know your customer
Once you find your niche, it’s time to become almost creepily obsessed with getting to know them. We’re not just talking about listing demographics here, like age, gender, or location – though knowing that stuff can be helpful.
If you really want to start building relationships, and making your brand stand out, then you need to know how your customer thinks. How do they search for products and services? What convinces them to buy something? What gets them excited, and what makes them miserable?
Treat your customer like your new best friend, learn everything there is to know about their behavior and expectations. Create personas for every segment you serve, from Budget Betty to Luxurious Linda. Once you know your potential clients, you can learn how to talk to them.
In other words, get to the crux of solving their problems. If you’re an electrician, you don’t just install lights, you help your customers navigate their homes, and illuminate their lives.
4. Spy on the competition
Learning how to make your brand stand out also means knowing what you’re up against. You can’t be “different” if you don’t know who you’re trying to separate yourself from.
Every company, large and small, has competitors. Who are yours?
Consider not just direct competitors, but indirect competition too. For instance, Coca-Cola isn’t just competing against Pepsi. They’re also fighting for market share against every other brand that produces fizzy drinks.
Once you’ve found your competitors, define their strengths and weaknesses. What do they do better than you, and what can you do that’s better than them? How do they position their products and services? What marketing channels do they use?
5. Create products that deliver value
Once again, this might sound obvious, but people don’t just spend money for the sake of it. When people buy products, they’re looking to either achieve a specific goal, or solve a problem.
Even companies selling necessary products know this. Toothpaste manufacturers, for example, don’t just rely on customers wanting to keep their teeth clean. They show customers how they can have a brighter smile, and protect their health with their products.
The easiest way to make sure your products are delivering value is to use your insights into your target audience. Use their pain points to find solutions.
Make sure you’re consistent when holding yourself to production standards too. Source the right materials, use the best-quality machinery. It pays off.
6. Deliver on your brand promise
Ever wondered how popular brands retain the loyalty of their customers? They don’t just give them the cheapest products, or invest heavily in marketing campaigns. They do exactly what they say they’re going to do.
Your brand promise outlines exactly what you’re going to do for your customers. If you’re a massage therapist, you’re not just going to rub people’s backs. You’re going to help them overcome pain and live a better quality of life.
Delivering on your brand promise might seem like a simple concept, but it’s often more complicated than it appears. For instance, if you promise you’re never going to let your customers run out of an essential product, like Lowe’s did with its “Never be out” campaign, you need to have a plan.
How are you going to ensure customers can access exactly what they need, even when supply chains falter and natural disasters happen?
7. Leverage the power of content creation
For years, the phrase “content is king” has been thrown around the digital landscape. It’s more than just a cliché. Content is what gives you visibility in a crowded market. It’s how you tell your customers how you’re going to solve their biggest challenges.
Creating your own blog is a good way to get started. You can produce all kinds of content to attract a wider audience, using search engine optimization to rank for keywords related to your brand.
But don’t just stick to written, thought leadership content. Experiment with finding the perfect marketing technique. Use social media content to connect with and nurture your customers on their favorite channels. Create an email newsletter to keep your customers up to date.
Think about how you can resonate with your customers in new ways, through video marketing, podcasts, and even webinars or courses.
8. Invest in personal branding
Today’s customers don’t just judge companies by their corporate branding efforts. More than ever, they’re also looking at the people behind the company.
Look at Elon Musk, for instance. The founder of Tesla has a massive social media presence, and is constantly interacting with his target audience. Ensuring your brand leaders have a strong presence is a good way to strengthen your emotional connection with customers.
Giving them a voice, both online and offline, is great for building trust with your clients. It shows that there are people behind your company who actually know what they’re talking about.
Plus, investing in personal branding can make your marketing strategies more effective too. For example, Google prioritizes “EEAT”, Expertise, Experience, Authority and Trust when ranking pages. To determine which content has EEAT, it looks at the people who produce it.
9. Deliver excellent customer service
When it comes to learning how to make your brand stand out, don’t forget there’s more to making an emotional connection with your customers than having a memorable image. Your customers will also judge you by the service you deliver.
89% of customers say they’ll stop purchasing from a brand if they don’t get a good level of service. So, ask yourself, how are you going to deliver amazing experiences?
How can you ensure your customers get products quickly, with faster delivery times? How can you respond rapidly to your customer’s concerns? Will you have a customer service team active over phone lines, live chat, and social media?
What can you do to empower your customers when they’re shopping? Can you offer personalized recommendations over email or SMS? Will you design your website to make shopping easier than ever? Maybe you can even offer a range of payment methods?
10. Be innovative
Exceptional branding requires a lot of creativity. As mentioned above, it’s not enough to simply do whatever your competitors are doing. You need to think outside of the box. If you’re promoting your business on social media channels like TikTok, can you create new challenges?
If you’re using video content to engage with your audience, can you experiment with 360-degree content and extended reality? If all of your competitors have a strong online presence, can you invest in experiential offline campaigns to connect with customers in-person?
Don’t just be innovative with your marketing campaigns. Constantly look for new ways to differentiate yourself. Can you use new techniques in production to make your products eco-friendlier and more sustainable?
11. Make bold statements
Great brands don’t stay quiet when major trends, and social concepts emerge in the market. Use your unique tone of voice to highlight your stance on the concepts that matter to your audience. Talk about how certain issues might affect your audience, and look for ways to help them.
If you’re taking the stance that the fashion landscape should be more sustainable, tell your audience what you’re doing to support that. Are you using recycled materials, giving money to organizations that plant new trees, or eliminating waste?
Taking a stance and actually acting on it will take your brand message to the next level. It will help you cut through the white noise of a competitive market, and generate word of mouth marketing from your customers.
12. Partner up
Not every company in your industry or landscape is a competitor. Some creators, innovators, and business leaders can actually benefit your business. For instance, if you want to upgrade your social media marketing strategy, working with influencers is always a good idea.
Influencers are always coming up with unique ways for brands to position themselves more effectively in front of their target audience. They can work with you on social media posts that resonate emotionally with your audience, and drive brand loyalty.
If you want to demonstrate your commitment to a certain cause, investing in sponsorship marketing, or working with a non-profit can be an excellent choice too.
Alongside influencer marketing and sponsorships, think about how you can boost your brand’s name by working with press companies, celebrities, and other new brands in your space.
13. Connect with your customers
Finally, one of the best ways to make your brand stand out in a crowded marketplace is to invest in actually building relationships with your target audience. That means giving your customers a voice, and actually listening to it.
Connect with your customer base on social media, hosting polls and asking questions to learn more about the products and services they love. Ask for their opinions, and cultivate reviews and testimonials whenever you can.
Not only will this help you build better relationships with your audience, but it will also give you the insights you need to create amazing products and services. Plus, it’s a great way to generate social proof and user generated content for your marketing strategy.
Remember, you don’t just have to engage with customers online. You can take part in local events, host events yourself, and reach out to clients beyond digital channels to collect new ideas.
Make your business stand out from the crowd
Learning how to make your brand stand out in such a competitive marketplace can seem complicated. There’s more to building an amazing brand than creating a great logo or investing in digital marketing. You need to focus on cultivating creative ideas, and building thought leadership.
You also need to act with a degree of sincerity, and deliver amazing customer experience across every channel. Most importantly, you need to know your customers, inside and out, so you can build your brand around their specific needs.
Elevating your brand above all of the competing companies in your industry takes time, creativity, and focus. However, it’s also essential to your success in the long run.
If you can effectively make your business stand out, you can guarantee you’re always going to capture the attention of customers, and earn revenue.
Fabrik: A branding agency for our times.