Branding for Small Business

What is a brand?

HINT: It’s not a logo…

What it isn’t

  • Identity (The tactile elements of a brand)
  • Marketing (The distribution of a brand)
  • Advertising (The creative expression of a brand)

What it is

  • Purpose (Reason for being)
  • Position (Competitive niche in the market)
  • Message (Well-articulated communications)
  • Culture (The basis of the brand experience)
  • Potential (How well it can perform in the market)
  • Equity (The tangible and intangible value of the business)

What can it accomplish?

Improve Performance

  • Narrower market focus
  • More targeted leads / Higher conversions
  • Overcome price-based competition
  • Produce a more aggressive growth curve

Level the Playing Field

Why a strong brand strategy is more impactful to a small business than a big one:


Even without a good brand strategy in place, a big business already has an established brand, by virtue of it’s age, size, and influence.


A small business, on the other hand, has limited resources and often exists in relative obscurity. Developing and distributing a clearly articulated brand position becomes all the more important.

How is it created ?

  • Self-awareness
  • Market awareness
  • Clarity of purpose
  • Refinement
  • Consistent approach
  • Flexibility / Adaptability

How is it defined ?

The THREE Questions every brand must answer:

Also makes for a great elevator pitch.

1. WHO are you?
What is your brand? What do you do?

2. HOW is that important?
What problem are you solving?

3. WHY should I care?
How does that impact me?

The FOUR qualifiers every answer should meet:

May only the strong survive.

1. Unique?
Is it own-able?

2. Compelling?
Is it exciting?

3. Believable?
Is it honest?

4. Sustainable?
Is it consistent?