Why Small Businesses Should Think Reputation Marketing and how to win the Future
Marketing of products and creating value for the customer by managing their brand is important for a small business. Current SME marketing is informal, loose, unstructured, spontaneous, reactive, built in compliance with industry norms. And since they are more vulnerable a changing competitive environment than larger firms it’s high time we sit down and develop a strong brand in SMEs.
But let’s begin by establishing your company’s brand positioning. Positioning is how a product appears in relation to other products in the market. It is the “added value” or augmented elements that determine a brand’s positioning in the marketplace.Brands can be positioned against competing brands on a perceptual map (see below). This perceptual map defines the market in terms of the way buyers perceive key characteristics of competing products. The basic perceptual map that buyers use maps products in terms of their price and quality, as illustrated below:
For an SME to be able to reposition their brand in the market it is crucial for them to implement the four main strategies:
> work towards providing unique and distinctive characteristics, experiences and image (marketing positioning)
> guide the company towards brand management (brand positioning strategy)
> identify the superior performance of the products (product positioning)
> distinguish the barriers that may limit the branding efforts
These factors proved effective in the form of increased sales and revenues and in turn, may work toward building a stronger image for the brand in the market.
Simply put, for you to develop a successful brand, your attitude towards your branding and vision should be clear and direct. You should also understand and internalise that there is a direct link between the brand and the owner.