Pro Landscaper Connect’s managing director Jim Wilkinson offers advice on targeting your branding to your audience.

Company branding is a touchy subject. This is because a lot of people have a different understanding of what branding is and what it means.
 
There tends to be a lot of focus on the company logo, but branding should be a lot deeper than that.
 
Your company brand is one of your greatest assets. It’s not only about your logo, slogan and design scheme, it’s also about your clients total experience of your business.

Your branding is:

Your customer promise
Business values
Your personality and the way you talk to customers
The way you package your service and answer your phone

 
Communicating your brand to your customers will spread confidence and goodwill.
 
It is a badge that will set you apart from competitors and can give you a lasting competitive edge.
 
Look at the companies that you admire. For me, Apple and John Lewis are both great examples of a consistent brand. They have a consistent quality of products and consistent quality of service. But, EasyJet’s branding reflects a low cost, no frills service.
 
These companies have all decided on their place in their respective sectors. They have built their brands around the position they want to sit within. You need to understand what you can, and what you want to, deliver, and delivering this on a consistent basis is key.

Benefits of getting your branding right

Your customers know exactly what they can expect from you
If you deliver on your promises, they will come back to you again and again
A good brand identity will also attract new clients
It will help you improve client retention
Recruit the right staff
It will cut the types of enquiries that you don’t want
 
Tell your potential clients about your business. But make sure it actually matches the service that you deliver.
 
Make sure your brand allows your company to over deliver and leave a positive after taste. Repeat business is great.

Developing branding

It’s no use developing a premium brand if your target wants the cheapest quote. Also, a brand based on friendly customer service will not survive if your staff are rude and/or unhelpful.
 
Understanding your client base is paramount for good branding. It’s worth doing a little business exercise.
 
Check the top 3 or 4 attributes of your brand against the top things you believe that your clients need from your service. Do they match?
 
Look at where you tend to win the majority of your contracts. Check why. Is it price? Quality? Service? Or is it a mixture? How do these relate to your company branding.
 
It also worth checking that all your team understand your branding, what it means and how it effects their roles.
 
Its amazing how often you hear owners talking about their company. Their understanding of the brand is great, but the lack of it from other members of the team leaves a lot to be desired.
 
Branding isn’t just your logo – It has to run through all aspect of the business.