The Lee Kenny column – Standing out from the crowd during 2019

Lee Kenny, managing director of Snowflake Media.
Lee Kenny, managing director of Snowflake Media.

For most businesses, 2019 already has a reputation that it is going to be a tougher trading year. Some will ramp up their marketing efforts, some will keep their head down, while others sadly will be no more.

When the Facebook groups discuss what’s needed in Sowerby Bridge, Halifax and Elland opinions are always divided. For every Primark advocate, there is another who will support “buy local” or independent retailers.

You can often hear the collective groan when a new coffee shop, barbers, sandwich shop or curry house opens its doors.

So how can businesses not only survive, but thrive, in 2019 and beyond? As a sales-generation company, Snowflake Media reviews huge amounts of data and research and what we hear time and again (proving there’s very little change in good practice) is that differentiating your business is probably the most vital thing you can do to stand out from the crowd.

I asked three Calderdale-based experts, what building a brand meant to them and to share a few tips to help you get a head start next year on growing your business.

More than just a logo!

“The interesting thing about a brand is that people create a logo and think that is their brand. The brand is actually about a lot more than the logo, it’s what people say about you when you are not in the room, it’s the space you occupy in someone’s mind,” says Judith Wright, managing director at Wright Angle Marketing.

“You need to manage the development of it so the brand creates the response that fits with the underlying values that the brand is based on.”

Place it at front and centre

“Don’t give your branding the backseat in your business. If you love your brand, then embrace it and make it easy for people to recognise your work,” advises Fi Woodhead from FiandBecs.com. “Your website to your clothing, your letterheads to your social media accounts and vehicles – the more you display your brand the greater the chance that you’ll be the first business that people think of.”

Clarity is key

Paul Greenwood, creative director at local start up Hive of Many, said: “Have a clearly defined product or service, know who it’s for and how it creates value for your customers.”

Starting with a customer in mind is a great way to begin. After all you probably started your business to solve an issue you felt others were not doing as well as you could.

The benefits of creating a brand help you deliver more great work to customers and ultimately add more profits to the bottom line.

I wish you a very Merry Christmas and hope you have a wonderful week ahead regardless of how or whether you celebrate this time of year!