Since the advent of the Internet every single business no matter how large or how small has to some extent a level playing field to play one. By this I mean that the smallest business if they invest wisely can present themselves in a manner that allows them to compete and win business from their largest competitors.
At school we all learned that you shouldn’t copy anyone, however while this is fundamentally true, you should still study your competition and learn from them. Work out what they are doing right, and copy, improve and modify their strategies and reap the rewards that go along with doing so.
Personalize Your Brand
No, it’s not about you; it’s about them. Think of your best customer and then personalize everything you do to focus on this one customer. Your email messages and all your marketing messages should be or feel personalized to your audience.
Show Your Passion
Due to the fact that you don’t need to worry about a huge business, you have more time to focus on the passion you feel about your business and your offerings. If that shines through to your audience, they’ll respond by becoming raving and passionate fans of yours.
Stay Lean and Mean
A big advantage any small business has over bigger businesses is that you can stay lean more easily than they can. You can outsource a lot of work during busy seasons and rein that in during the off season, keeping your profit margins up. This advantage allows you to spend money and time branding smartly.
Large businesses have lots of red tape and paperwork to go through in order to get things done. You don’t, It’s just you, right? So, you can act on new ideas quickly, beating the bigger businesses to the punch and reaping the rewards before they can ever hope to implement anything new.
Provide Exceptional Customer Service
As a small business you also have the ability to deliver brilliant customer service, because you don’t have to deal with as high a volume of complaints and issues as a large business, where the owners are very separated from the details of day to day operations.
Keeping your niche small is very important to a small business. You cannot spread yourself so thin that you don’t have time to make that one thing that you do the exceptionally well, differentiating yourself from your competitors.
Plan for Growth
Even as a small business, if you do everything right, you’re going to have to be ready for growth. Perhaps you need to identify contractors and software that enables you to grow. That way you won’t have to reinvent the wheel each time you need to grow.
Pay Attention to Details
When you’re a small business, the little things really do matter. Pay close attention to the things you do because the smallest thing, such as sending a thank you note, a birthday wish and the close personal attention that you can give, will make all the difference to your customers and audience members.
As a small business even with a small budget you really have an advantage over big business. You don’t need a large budget to brand yourself, you simply need the ability to focus on your values and ideals in a way that speaks to your audience and to act and do what is necessary.