woman building a profitable business using 11 essential steps

Elevate Your Brand: 11 Essential Steps You Need to Take Now

Tip #1: Use consistent brand visuals.

Visuals register with the brain first, so a consumer should first see a consistent brand look.

Brand EVERYTHING the same way. Think of Coca-Cola or Apple. They look very different—Coke’s red, swoopy logo versus Apple’s Zen bluish-silver website. Both are successful. Both send a consistent visual message that goes on all their content. You would never confuse one for the other.

Take a lesson from the big dogs: there should be no confusion about who created the content. Your business name, logo, tagline, and colors should register quickly with the user.

Super-bonus tip: make sure that your logo and name are clickable, and check it on a mobile site to ensure that it does not scale down to unreadable.

Tip #2: Go big in two or three channels.

Choose your brand channels based on where most customers are already hanging out. There are many demographic studies about age, sex, ethnicity, income, and even intent around brand channels. (see resources)

What is a brand channel? Examples include Facebook, your blog, LinkedIn, Instagram, guest posting on industry blogs, Pinterest, and YouTube. And don’t forget traditional brand channels such as TV, radio, and print.  Add more channels once you have a track record (and the staff).

Tip #3 Half of all internet traffic is now mobile – make sure your content is mobile-friendly

Mobile is growing. Make sure that whatever content you create tests across all devices.

Try Google’s free Mobile-Friendly test site (see resources) to make sure that your content and brand visuals are easily viewable. You only have a couple of seconds before a visitor decides to stay and view or bounce away from your content. You got them to your content; don’t chase them off because they have to pinch and scroll.

Super-bonus tip: use buttons for clickable links in your mobile content. It can be frustrating to tap-tap-tap on a text link that won’t connect with your fingertip.

Tip #4 Be the (wo)man with the plan

Create an editorial calendar that keeps your message going. Plan around national and industry events and holidays. A plan does two things:

Bulk create content: You know you’ll need 36 Pinterest pin graphics (it’s in your plan). It’s usually easier (and cheaper) to have a graphic artist do all of them for the whole year rather than parceling them out one at a time.

Create an integrated, cohesive storyline that evolves over time. Let’s say you’re a tax accounting firm. You might want to devote the first quarter to tax prep, the second quarter to questions posed by clients, the third quarter to pending changes, and the fourth quarter to end-of-year prep. By having a plan in place, you can not only know the content that needs to be posted (and where it is going) but can also be on the lookout for opportunities to further your reach.

Read more in the resources section.

Tip #5: Ask your audience what they want to know.

As Homer Simpson would say “D’oh!”

Read social media and chat sites to see what questions your customers are asking, then create content around them. What better way to build brand loyalty and authority than to be the business that answers those questions?

Since you are already active in these channels (see Tip #2), spend your time reading what your clients are talking about on these sites. What posts get the greatest response? Are people confused, opinionated, or passionate? That is a sign that you should create content around this.

Super-bonus tip: pose questions yourself. “If you were buying (your product), what is the one thing it must have?” “What is the one thing that would keep you from buying (your product)?” You will get many nonsense answers, but you will also gain insight into how your customers think.

Tip #6: Promote your content

If you completed Tip #5 and created tailored content, now it’s time to return to these places and tell your clients that you have solutions to their problems. Discuss your topic and post a response with a link to your content.

Super-bonus tip: add visuals. Graphics or videos increase engagement. Use a simple site such as Canva to create fast graphics to make your content stand out.

Extra Super-bonus tip: Participate in the conversation. When someone posts an answer, respond. Comment, ask a follow-up question, and post a resource. Be engaged. This does two things: it keeps the conversation at the top of the flow (recent active posts generally stay near the top of most social media feeds) and increases your social engagement, which Google rewards.


Tip #7: Content does not have to be original – but it has to be good and relevant.

Curated content (content you have found and passed along) can be as powerful as original content – with a couple of rules.

First, only use curated content that is really good. This will advance your brand and add to your conversation with your customers. If you find a great recipe, only post it if you are selling food or have a cooking-related business. Save (most of) the personal stuff for your blog or personal Facebook page.

Second, add your commentary or review. Take a few minutes to read the content and glean the relevant facts for your readers. Tell them why it’s important. Highlight key parts for the skimmers in your audience.

Super-bonus tip: curate your content by setting up Google Alerts and Feedly. You will get custom content delivered to you that you can easily choose to share.

Tip #8: Make sure your digital footprints all lead home

Any time you create content, your readers should have an immediate way to click back to your site.

Guest posting? Add a bio section with an invitation to learn more about whatever you just posted – preferably a link to another specific, related piece of content.

Super-bonus tip: Create a custom bio for your social media – and refresh it at least twice a year (quarterly is better) See resources for a cheat sheet.


woman building profitable business using 11 essential steps

Tip #9: Tip Better yet, create a gotta-have-it-now reason to click over to your site in the form of a lead magnet.

Lead magnets don’t have to be long or difficult to create. The best lead magnets solve a specific problem that your business solves for them. The upside? People who click on the lead magnet are self-selecting as your target market. Win-win.

Super-bonus tip: Try different lead magnets for different audiences. Test your results.

Extra-super-bonus tip: Repackage your most popular content. Take three blog posts and make a short eBook. Distil the points in a post into a cheat sheet. Add visuals and your branding. Eureka! You have a (nearly) ready-made lead magnet.

Tip #10: Create a landing page – or six.

If all your visitors arrive at your home page, you are asking them to figure out what you want them to do next. Yeah…how is that working out for you and your brand?

Now imagine you can custom-tailor the experience for your visitors…. well, through landing pages. While you won’t create a landing page for every piece of brand content, you probably have themes or client audiences that are distinct enough to build a landing page around their visit.

Tip #11: Take names (and email addresses)

You’re in business to make money, right? And having many potential customers to contact who have already expressed interest in you would be fabulous, right?

If you’re nodding and saying yeah to those questions, it’s time to step into the wonderful world of email marketing. Email isn’t scary. The resources section has a link to an online email course from Skillshare.

Tip #9 suggests creating a landing page. Add an opt-in box and gather email addresses.  And watch your customer lead list grow.

Patricia Browne

Patricia Browne

Patricia Browne is the author of seven books that help businesses grow and profit.

Read about The Profit-ize system and what it can do for your business

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