We’re told, not only when we’re young, but as we work in business and play sports, that it is okay to mistakes. That’s how we learn and try not to repeat them over and over again.

When you’re in the construction of branding your online business, you need to ensure you don’t make mistakes that could cause you long term problems. Here are three branding mistakes that you will see regularly. Make sure you avoid them and learn from other people’s mistakes.

1) Inconsistency

Consider the two main global cans of cola drink for a moment. You know what their cans look like, you know their logos and you can recognize both easily in the largest of superstores where you have 40 other choices. Those companies have been consistent with their branding over the years. Even when they change their can design, the changes are slight so you still recognize the brand of your choice immediately.

Many online businesses make the simple error of failing to be consistent with their message. They believe that consistently updating the style of their website and the type of communication they are trying to convey will bring them more business in the long term.

The problem is with changing too drastically. You will end up with a weak brand if you are constantly altering your website’s visual image.

Your message and style of writing must remain consistent. If one month all your blog posts are very serious and the following month you offer a joke every day in each post, your audience won’t know what to expect next. Mixing it up is always good, but if you muddle your style and message, your branding will disappear. Plan ahead and consider making only gradual changes.

2) Failure to Develop

Over time, you will need to share a story with your audience. This will bring a high level of interest to your visitors. They will want to share in your growth both as a business and as a brand.

If you make your website too rigid and too corporate, your audience may not feel they are part of your community. Alternately, you can become too friendly. They may not be interested in your detailed personal lifestyle and the days when you take your cat to the veterinarian.

Give your customers the chance to join in your growth. They will enjoy telling everyone they knew you when you were just starting out, tracing your career through the many stages of your development – all the way to your listing on the stock market. They want to know you are real and want to connect with you.

3) Failure to Become Known as the Expert

Simply, you need to become the expert your audience will turn to when they need a question answered. If your visitors don’t regard you as the authority in your chosen area, they might go elsewhere when they make their biggest purchase.

Correcting this should be regarded as the major goal in your branding exercise.

If you want to buy a new television, you will know instantly the names of the big brands and your favorite online store, which will deliver to you tomorrow. You regard them as your experts in immediate delivery at the right price.

An expert can charge more when the time is right. The expert’s brand is passed around social networks as everyday gossip.

Take time to appraise your branding and see how you are heading in the right direction. If you are making these obvious mistakes, how can you rectify them?


作者 Tim Brookes

Tim Brookes is the Managing Director of Storage Concepts, a UK-based mezzanine floor & suspended ceiling company.