How Branding Plays Into Your Sales Process
When you run a business, your brand is arguably your most valuable asset. It encompasses your values, personality, passions, products, services, and core competencies. Most importantly, it’s what sets your company apart from its competitors.
The average person can’t always differentiate between products or services at first glance, so you must rely on branding to appeal to your target clients and garner interest before revealing the true value of your work. A great brand appeals to a person’s mind and heart — it’s what allows people to know, like, and trust your brand.
Of course, trust is a crucial aspect of sales — therefore, you need to ensure that your brand is appealing and cohesive to make the most out of your sales process. Here are a few ways branding plays into your sales game.
Target your ideal client.
Before you even pull out your elevator pitch, your branding is already doing the hard work of qualifying and curating the leads that come into your sales funnel. If you are primarily focused on reaching young, environmentally conscious couples, your branding should be incorporating light, airy, and organic elements that will catch their eye. If you want to embrace same-sex couples as your main clients, you should be using imagery with a lot of diversity. If you’re angling towards corporate clients, you may opt for a professional and minimalistic brand.
Put yourself in your target client’s perspective and ask yourself: What would draw you in about a company? It could be colors, website design, tone of voice, imagery choice — it all plays into your brand and what makes your company unique.
Speak to the quality of your work.
Your brand can define a client’s expectations before you even get a chance to say a word to them. If, for example, your brand assets are all shiny, gold, and luxe, people will expect top-of-the-line services with a price tag to match. On the other hand, if your brand is disjointed and confusing, you’ll likely be considered a budget-friendly option with lower quality service — even if you always knock it out of the park.
This isn’t just for online branding, of course. This also plays out in the way your office is decorated, how you and your staff are dressed, general tone of voice, and more. In fact, it’s the offline branding that is truly what will win a client’s sale. Anyone can pay for a snazzy website and curated social media presence; prospects will be looking to see if you, your team, and your work environment match their expectations.
Build stronger relationships.
At the end of the day, sales and marketing are all about relationships. When you embody your brand, your prospects will recognize what sets you and your business apart from others. Don’t be afraid to show your likes, dislikes, life story, insecurities, and fears — together, these factor into your brand along with your talents, achievements, and values within your organization and industry.
Our industry is sometimes seen as a commodity, so the clients need to be educated to realize the value in our goods and services. In order to be open to learning, they first need to like, trust, and believe in you. That is best done through being open and genuine with prospects, showing them the similarities between your personal identity and the company brand that initially drew them in.
Refine the client experience.
As mentioned prior, branding isn’t just about colors, logos, and social media posts. Instead, it’s something that encompasses the entirety of a client experience — so, don’t think that you’re done once a prospect walks in the door. Branding is everything from the details in the meeting room to how a client is greeted — is there a bottle of water or a glass of wine waiting for them?
As with branding, sales is also a long game — it carries on well beyond when the ink dries. Throughout the planning process, you have countless opportunities to upsell clients on additional products or services that will enhance their experience as long as it’s on brand. While the specifics may vary based on your company, add-ons are a great way to drive home the value of your brand while increasing your bottom line.
Plus, enhancing the client experience always has the benefit of turning into positive reviews and customer referrals, so never stop giving your clients the best that your brand has to offer.
With 30 years of experience owning event planning, high-end catering, and design and décor companies, Meryl Snow is on a mission to help businesses get on their own path to success. As a Senior Consultant & Sales Trainer for SnowStorm Solutions, Meryl travels throughout North America training clients in the areas of sales, marketing, design, and branding. As a valued member of the Wedding Industry Speakers, she speaks with groups from the heart with warmth and knowledge, and covers the funny side of life and business.