Not all of us have the luxury or opportunity to work with a brand that everyone knows. I've been lucky to work for some big brands but also had to manage smaller brands that didn't have the awareness, reach or budget that a big brand has. Although there are certainly some great advantages to having all those things with a brand, you can still make your brand have an impact regardless of its size. Here are some keys to make sure you are on the path to thinking like a big brand:
- Be consistent - smaller brands are often at some early stage of maturity, trying to figure out their place in the market. Moving as the market moves is fine and you will always make some adjustments during this phase, but it is critical that all your messaging, channels and positions be in lockstep with one another. Without that consistency, your customers and the market won't know which way to go.
- Be clear - most smaller brands get caught in a trap of complicating their message either to be different from their big competitors or make themselves sound smart. The challenge is they may shoot over the market and not get the heart of their message across. Clarity is something all marketers should strive for and it's especially true for smaller brands.
- Move in small steps - every big brand once started as a small brand and made there way up the ladder. You may catch a break and jump a rung or two but the good brands that work over time and are of quality methodically grow and build as their company grows. If you try to jump too many steps on the ladders you'll end up falling off.
- Embrace the path - I would submit it is a greater challenge to build a small brand than it is to manage a big brand since you generally have fewer arrows to shoot at the target and almost all of them have to be accurate. Regardless, as a marketer take on the challenge of dealing with smaller brands with excitement because the experience is great and you never know where it will lead.
I hope that everyone gets to have the opportunity to have their brand on the big stage at some point, but even if it doesn't get there that doesn't mean you are not successful. Niche brands and brands in smaller market spaces can be just as successful as big brands and sometimes even more so. Take your brand down the path you have and watch it grow and flourish.