3 Big Brand Marketing Tactics for Your Small Business


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While there are probably some big-name brands you can think of that seemed to have overnight success, most brands become household names after considerable time and effort. Can you, as a small business, market like a big brand? While you may not be able to spend 7 million dollars on a Super Bowl commercial or hire a well-known actor to promote your business, you can draw inspiration from big brands. Below are a few marketing tactics used by big brands that you can try for your small business.

Create a Strong Brand Identity

We’ve talked about branding before and we’ll probably talk about it again. Branding plays a huge role in marketing. Creating a brand that customers recognize and remember is crucial for growing your customer base. There are lots of big brands who have created such a strong brand identity that people can recognize them by just looking at part of their logo or hearing a clip of their jingle.

The New York Post reported on a study that shows some of the most recognizable logos. Apple came in at number 1, followed by McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Nike, and Starbucks. There’s much more to branding than just a logo, but the logo is an important part. Those top 5 companies are great examples of staying consistent with branding. While they’ve all made updates over time, they’ve also maintained similar elements in their logos for decades. This consistency with their branding is why so many people can recognize them. It’s also why equally big names, like Pepsi, are a little further down on the list.

Utilize User-Generated Content

User-generated content (UGC) can help to build a community around your brand. It can also add an air of authenticity. A lot of brands have utilized this over the years, and there are lots of ways to encourage your customers to create UGC. Anything from a branded photobooth at an event to a Snapchat, Instagram, or TikTok filter can encourage UGC. A lot of online retail companies also utilize UGC in their review section. One great example is Amazon.

If you’ve ever looked at Amazon reviews, you may have noticed that users can upload photos and videos of the product they are reviewing. Other users find this helpful. If you’re looking at an item of clothing, the review photos can offer a more diverse range of body types than what may be represented by the models. If you’re looking at a detailed item, review photos can offer different angles than what’s included in the listing. This kind of UGC benefits both the buyer and the seller. The buyer can see a real interaction with the product and you, as the seller, can see the kinds of details customers want more of.

Tell Compelling Stories

For as long as humans have existed, so has storytelling. Storytelling has been used to teach lessons, share values, explain reasoning, and—maybe most often—for entertainment. As a small business owner, you too can harness the power of storytelling for marketing your business. Lots of big-name brands have done this over the years. Here are a few examples to consider.

  • Burt’s Bees—Burt’s Bees has been using storytelling on YouTube to create interesting and educational videos that provide information about bees. Since bees have been struggling to thrive in recent years, and the company relies on bees for many of its natural-based skincare products, it makes sense that Burt’s Bees would want to encourage customers to care for the little buzzers.
  • Nike—As an athletic-wear company, Nike is big on motivation. They’ve ran several commercials over the years that tell inspiring stories of famous athletes. Through these, they’ve been able to empower their audience and create a connection between motivation and their products.
  • Dove—Similar to Burt’s Bees caring for their buzzing partners, Dove has spent years telling stories that care for their customers. They’ve tackled issues relating to self-esteem, what makes women feel beautiful, how beauty is perceived, and several other related topics. While soap itself isn’t something people would normally feel emotionally connected to, the storytelling Dove has used has been able to create an emotional bond between their brand and the customers who are watching.

Call Bold River Marketing for help.

Just because you run a small business doesn’t mean you can’t market like the big brands. If you want help with your small business marketing, call Bold River Marketing. We’ll work with you so you can market like a big brand but pay like a small business. Contact us today to get started.