Create branding buzz for your biz

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

ALXANDRIA, Va. - Starbucks. Best Buy. Your own HME business. Yes, that's right. Even an HME business needs a strong brand identity to ensure success in today's competitive market.
A brand is more than just a logo or tag line, says Colette Weil, managing director of Summitt Marketing, who hosted an AAHomecare seminar in January called "Boost Retail Business--Generate a Buzz About Your Brand."
"It really represents everything about you and what comes to mind when someone mentions your business," said Weil. "That includes employees, vendors and other professionals--everybody will have a comment about your firm."
Building a brand takes diligence, patience and investment, she said.
"The target audience needs to be aware of you and needs to have confidence in you," said Weil. "They need to be rewarded by the experience so they will talk about you and return."
Building a brand takes time but pays off in repeat business and continued word-of-mouth as providers launch new products and services or expand existing operations.
Tackling your marketing strategy is critical to building brand and every market is different, said Weil. Providers must look at competitors, geography, target audience, income distribution and the media as they work out their strategy. Create a budget, set a planning calendar and identify marketing tools.
Weil advises providers to set the foundation for a solid marketing plan by defining the company's mission, name and position.
"Frequently, companies will summarize their position with a tag line," said Weil. "It helps rally employees and it gives a cumulative position or personality to an additional three or four key messages that you will communicate."