Brand Yourself The Right Way

Creating a brand is more than just a snazzy logo and a couple of regularly used colours. Creating a brand for your business is an identity. It defines who you are as a business and becomes the forefront of all your media actions from that point onwards. When re-identifying your brand or starting out with a new business, it’s helpful to know a couple of things that will help you succeed in keeping your brand identity. 

Firstly, discover colours and fonts that you want your brand to use. Choose wisely as some fonts may be hard to read in marketing text passages. Once you’ve decided on those fonts and a maximum of 5 colours that will help to represent your brand, you can then start to think about a logo. How will your logo fit into the style and colours of your newly chosen brand colours and fonts? 

Logo creation is always tricky because design is such a personal and unique process. At Branch Out Online, we find it useful to have a simple logo. Often simple is best with these types of things. Don’t overcrowd your logo with text either. Text can become distracting to people looking at your logo and let’s face it, nobody wants to have to concentrate on a logo to understand the name or slogan. Ah, slogans! This may be a controversial opinion and probably may anger people with businesses over the age of 40, but slogans on logos are not a good idea. They’re outdated and tacky. 

So you have colours, fonts and a great new logo to match. What now? Well, I’d say get putting ideas into motion. Bring those components together onto a piece of work, whatever the size. Maybe start by creating an invoice (or have us do this for you). Get a great invoice template you can use every time your company charges. What better way to start than have the one piece of marketing material you send to all customers looking fresh, slick and representing your brand.

Following this, think about further marketing material you’re sending out. Hire an expert to create a design for you. Then follow this up with a website using the same fonts and colours and your fresh new logo. 

If you need help with re-branding or initial branding, contact us today for advice or a quick chat to discuss your project. 

Get Noticed

Businesses in 2018 need to be online. The first place people go if they need a service isn’t the yellow pages anymore. It’s Google. Google cleverly determines where users are and finds them a service near to them. It’s that simple to become noticed online. Of course there are tricks and tips you can use to to ensure you get near to the top of Google searches and no, that part doesn’t often come easy. However getting online is the first step.

Next time you have a spare moment, Google your competitors and see if they show up on the search. Google your service and your location see which companies appear. If yours doesn’t, think about why not. If you’re willing to do something about it, or simply need advice, contact us. We offer free advice and tips to help you get noticed locally.

Creating a social media buzz

Create a social media buzz for this year by creating and posting great looking content. There are so many tools to help you do this in the modern day that there’s simply no excuse. If you’re not in the position to have a dedicated staff member to help you create that buzz and boost your online presence, we can help. With our low rates for social media marketing, we’re a great choice. 

Make sure that you understand your customers. If you’re targeting a certain audience, you need to make that audience aware that your posts are for them. Follow, like or just connect with everyone you can relative to your business. This is a golden rule for creating buzz. If your posts aren’t engaging or have no substance to them, you’re likely to lose your following as your posts aren’t even worth reading. 

Analyse your audience. Use analytic tools built in with social media platforms to get the best from your posts and social media accounts. For more information on how these tools work and how to use them, contact us today. We can offer free advice to you and also come to you with training and tips.  

The Importance of Responsive Design

If there’s one thing you should do today, it’s check that your website works on all screen sizes. If it doesn’t, then you need to ditch that website as soon as you can. 

Websites are now accessed through hundreds of different devices all over the globe. If your website isn’t designed well enough to look good on all of them, how can you continue to use the website? 

The next thing I would check, is if the website works on a small screen like a mobile phone. What you should be trying to avoid is your website showing the same way it does on a desktop computer only scaled down. That is poor website design. Users are lazy when scrolling through the internet it’s a well known fact. The easier you can make it for the user the better. If your user is having to pinch their fingers on their mobile device in order to click a link or button on your website, then think about ditching the website.

Mobile access should be simple and quick. Your website shouldn’t have to cram a full navigation bar into a mobile device screen size.

Look at your design today and check alternative screen sizes. If your website isn’t mobile friendly, contact us today.  

The Power of Social Media

Social Media is booming. Simple as that. If your company isn’t using social media, they should be. You’d network in person, meeting people talking about what you do as a company in hopes to gain connections and interest from other people, so why wouldn’t you do the exact same thing on a social network? 

Social networking is free. It’s free advertising for your business on some of the most visited websites out there. Of course there is a correct way to use social media and it pays to know how to use it. Businesses using Facebook as a means of running competitions to boost knowledge of their business should be careful. If you’re going to try Facebook’s fantastic business page creator be sure to read up on competition rules so you don’t find your account suspended.

Knowing which social media platforms are best for different audiences allows a better targeting of customers, for instance, LinkedIn, a globally used social network used by professionals to connect with each other in a professional and business focused way. If your company isn’t on LinkedIn, you’re missing out on millions of professionals waiting to discover what you have to offer. 

Here are the facts. Facebook as of 2017 has 2.07 Billion active users globally. That’s active users, not to mention the users that only visit their profile once a month. Twitter has 330 Million active users, a lot less than Facebook but still a massive audience right there for you to target.

For smaller businesses, it’s hard to find the time to post on social media alongside your daily job role. We offer a pick and choose system with our social media marketing so that your package is tailored to your business. Contact us today if you’re interested in raising the online profile of your business.

What is SEO?

The term SEO is often thrown around by industry professionals with no real description for people without education about the internet and how search engines actually function. 

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. A search engine is a website like Google or Bing. A website used to search the internet and return results to the users. Creating a website that incorporates SEO means using different techniques to put keywords inside the code used to create the website that will help raise the website’s ranking on search engines. As a core goal, websites generally try and aim to be higher up in search engine results. This is because it allows websites to be found easily. 

There are other factors that come into play when working on a website's SEO including how often the website updated. By updating your website at least once every 2 days, your website will fair better than others with less regular updates. Having a blog is a great way for websites to both update their website regularly and also add keywords that link to your website. We recommend that every website has a blog and posts about things relevant to your business.

Social media platforms also rank on search engines too, so making sure that your business is using social media regularly is just as important.

In conclusion, SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. Websites can impact on search engine rankings, meaning try to make sure that your website is using proper SEO practice. There are many factors that help with your website's SEO, but you shouldn't expect to be the top search result by checking all of the above boxes. It's a complex process and one that only happens over time and you have to keep working at it. If you need help with this, or are interested in trying to get better search engine results, contact us today for a free consultation.