Are you just starting out with your business and not sure how and why branding is important to your growth? I went through that process and boy! did I learn! Let’s face it, the health and wellness industry is a huge industry that is growing by leaps and bounds. Competition is fierce, from the big gyms to the small private boutiques, it’s everywhere! So how do you position yourself in the industry? How do you let potential clients know that you’re out there, that you offer a different feel, that you are just different form the everyday?
Let’s start at the beginning…. When i first started on my own in the industry, I was working word of mouth, small business cards (they were bland and ugly really)… I was doing my thing on a very small scale, not really going anywhere. I tried different tactics to get out there but really, nothing was working.
One day, I tried my hand at networking… I had no material to speak of, only me and a few gym modalities, a few clinic tools and well… bad business cards. I worked the room anyway, because I can do that.. but… That evening, I met a young lady who’s specialty was branding small businesses… I asked the question: why is it so important? her answer was clear and precise: It’s what you need to do to place yourself in your industry, clients cannot identify with you if they can’t associate a picture, a mission and a face to your business… well, that makes sense!!!
We spoke long and hard about what tool to use to brand my business, on a budget of course. I didn’t have the monies to invest on a big scale at that time. Yet that small investment went a long way to help me position my business, and also my face to my business.
To make a long story short, this is how we did it…
- We began by identifying my credentials (what sets me apart from the rest)
We looked at the services I offered and which ones would bring in the most income
We explored with my perfect client, who I wanted to reach, who would use these services and who could afford the services
Then we went to work….
- She hired a professional photographer to capture the essence of who I am (what an experience!). We then chose one picture that would really depict who I am and then used that photo in all of my branding. ALL of it.. same picture for every piece. Why? So that the face was constant, without change, so that potential clients could recognize and begin identifying with it…
- We designed a logo that reflects my mission statement
- We then began looking at the website. That was quite the procedure. It’s not enough to tell people about the services, it’s all about the delivery! So we hired a writer to help us make it work! We placed key words that would capture attention and played with different design formats that were easy to follow links.
- Then we looked at how to direct traffic via newsletter, social media… we didn’t explore the strategies so much, her expertise is branding. All strategies pertaining to marketing is a whole other arm that I couldn’t afford at the time. I had to learn slowly but was well equipped since all my material was already branded!
- She designed all pieces with the same look, the same colors, the same feel… before I knew it, I was getting calls… I know!! really?? it was because i was using the brand to the best of my abilities by getting out there! Showing the pieces, using the pieces… It’s not use having all the glitz if no one will see it!!!
- Sure there are strategies to explore when marketing, but a good marketing firm will always tell you to brand yourself first, BEFORE you get out there!! As my business evolves and grows, I know that the initial branding pieces will continue to work for me. Sure, every once in a while, a new picture to update the look as my own looks change, but not very often…
The initial investment was well worth it, the R.O.I. (Return On Investment) was felt from the onset, not to mention what it did for my own confidence at getting out myself and my business out there! It added credibility to my small business, it added a pofessional feel to my business… it gave me what I needed to explore the future growth of my business.
Branding can be the most important investment you make in your business. Let your business shine by showing off who you are and what you do. Place yourself amongst the best and the brightest by showing potential clients that you are all that!!! You’ll be amazed and how one small investment can change the way you grow…
Do you have a start up experience to share with me? I would love to hear from you! Leave me a comment, let’s talk!