Tips for New Business Owners

Tips for New Business Owners

Whether you are in the process of starting your own business or you are merely thinking about it, the process can be a little daunting if you aren’t sure where to start. Nothing feels worse than having no clue what the next step should be or the best route to take, but with the right market and people, you can get back on track and keep pushing forward. Read this checklist for starting your own business to make sure you start off on the right foot.

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brand and marketing

5 Ways To Build Your Brand and Marketing In 2016

Brand and marketing for 2016 is the talk of the town. Read up on 5 ways you can start building your small business brand today.
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content marketing

How Content Marketing Makes You Look Like a #Boss

Content marketing and its importance to your business brand, is growing. Ensure that your business is on pace with the trend and implement it effectively.

Content marketing is the useful, informative, and creative way to build relationships with your customers with your brand and your business.
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Brand Management and Graphic Design

The What, Who and How of Brand Management | Anchorage Alaska Brand Management & Graphic Design

You did everything right. You wrote developed your vision, got a great looking logo, have your brand “story” to tell……and still nobody knows who you are, or what you do.

Whether you are just starting out or your business has been open for years, one thing that I’ve learned is the missing piece in most start-ups, dying, or stagnant businesses is lack of ongoing brand management. In other words, you’ve built the brand….but it has no push.
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How Brand & Marketing Costs You Money: Without Spending a Dime

So you say brand & marketing, web design and social media management is expensive.

Well, yes…….I’ll agree…….It is.

And being a small business owner myself, I get it. Although I don’t have to pay directly for a designers time, or a marketing strategy….. I do pay with MY time.

Often times, my marketing and design take a back seat to looming project deadlines. My portfolio updates are left for Christmas Breaks and strings of influenza when I’m stuck in bed. As a matter of fact, as I type this blog – I’m sick – Not a coincidence, but I digress.

Even though I am the designer, and I am the marketer, and I am the social media manager…..My business takes a back seat. I don’t give it the time it needs. I’m often the last to update my blog and branded content, last to have something meaningful posted on my facebook page, and last to interact to really track after clients.

What I’ve realized is that I’m not alone. I find that most small to medium sized businesses are in the same boat. They don’t have time to begin to figure out what they may need but they know they need something, and they realize they are losing traction by doing nothing at all.

I’ve said before, that if you have no budget you have no brand. This is the same concept as losing traction by not marketing and consistently keeping your brand in center focus.

It’s a frustrating position to be in when you are trying to keep your head above water managing the day to day operation of your business. You think of potential business ideas and see opportunities slipping by because you simply just don’t have the time to “make things happen.” You look at the well oiled machine of a business someone else is running and you wonder…how are they doing all of that and growing at the same time? You begin to feel overloaded and defeated, until you realize why you got into business for yourself to begin with. People have misconceptions about business ownership and you feel like you’re drowning.

Always caught in this catch 22 of not having enough, and needing to do more.

So how is brand & marketing costing you money without spending a dime? Well….. you are losing money, by lost opportunity. When you don’t send a message out…it’s never received. Growing your brand equity and brand recognition in the marketplace is essential to staying relevant to your target demographic.

So….for my fellow business owners I have some food for thought for you. 3 simple steps to take to start moving in the direction of gaining traction and getting things done.



Design and Marketing | Bianca Frank Design

Step 1 for Brand & Marketing Your Business | Find Your Purpose

Get OFF of the focus of how to make more money, save more money or grow. First things first is that as a business owner you have to figure out who you are and where you’re trying to go. Rationalize it, analyze it, speak it, and eventually write it down! Do not ask other people (unless they are co-owners of the business) what their opinions are. You have to be able identity for yourself why you are doing what you’re doing and why your customers and potential customers should even care.

Some key things to take inventory about:

  1. Why am I in business for myself? Money? Time with Family? Passion for the Industry?
  2. What is the purpose of this business? Am I helping someone? Am I providing a Needed Service?
  3. Where am I trying to take this business? Am I trying to leave a legacy? Am I trying to Grow it, to sell it? Am I just working until retirement and then close it?
  4. Why should anyone care that you are in business? (sounds harsh) but this is by far the most valuable question I ask my clients. If you don’t know why someone should care why you’re in business, then you shouldn’t be in business. You won’t be able to sell yourself to anyone if you can’t sell yourself to YOU.

 

Step 2 for Brand & Marketing Your Business | Work with People

The best of the best of the BEST see the value in TEAMS. You can’t be a one woman/man show and expect to be able to take over the wingbat technology sector. You have to formulate a plan and that includes having people around you that round out your strengths and weaknesses. Key people you may need:

  1. Small Business Administration – Utilizing places like the Small Business Administration is of great value to small business owners.
  2. Accountant – if you aren’t good with money or budgeting this is essential.
  3. Alaska Small Business Development Center – Another great resource for Alaska Small Business owners.
  4. Anchorage Chamber of CommerceOffers networking events to tie into others in your sector or partnering with businesses to lift one another up.
  5. Brand Consultant and Graphic Designer – You will spend more for a designer but the impact of having a strong aesthetic, unique brand asset, color and typography will push your message further and consistently.
  6. Marketing and Social Media Management – Keep your brand equity growing means keeping a tangible place in your market, and in the face of your target audience.

 

Step 3 for Brand and Marketing Your Business | Execute Your Plan and Stay Consistent

A sure fire way to make sure that your business grows and remains relevant is consistency. No you don’t have to come out of the marketing gate blazing trails, but you do need to have at least a small drip of movement. Small businesses are expensive to open, operate, and run but you do not want to have a brand that has zero gas behind it.

You have to utilize the vision, brand, and plan that’s been developed and consistently put that message out into the marketplace. Alaska is a small enough market that luckily it doesn’t take long for the word to get out about your business. Especially if you do things the right way.

Content is King and Consistency is Queen!

Contact Bianca Frank Design today to see how we can help increase your brand equity!

Bianca Frank Design offers a comprehensive brand and brand development package that can be utilized to begin or reinvigorate your small business marketing strategy. Whether you are in need of small business marketing strategies, graphic design, brand design, web design, or just need brand or design consultation on where to start. Drop a note and we will be in touch soon.

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3 Reasons Why You Need A Website

A new spring means new marketing strategies. If you company doesn’t already have a website, you should definitely add it to your To Do List for 2015.A website can help with any number of things involving your business strategy.

A Website Offers Visibility

If you want to expand your business outside of your current customer base, you need visibility in your market. Most consumers are on the web now both trying to find new places to shop or acquire services and also to research those companies they find. Ideally, a quick Google search for some keywords about your business will bring up your business as a top hit but it takes some time for that to happen.The first steps are getting a website, optimizing it will happen after.

A Website Provides Your Customers Up to Date Information about Your Company

Using a website to provide up to date information about your business is crucial.You can inform customers about events and new services you provide, or show off pictures of projects you’ve finished. If you have specials or sales that you want to advertise, your website is the perfect place to do it. Announcements about store closings, new employees, and other business logistics can be posted to your website to keep loyal customers informed of your company’s happenings.
Website Visibility | Bianca Frank Design

Your Website Improves Your Business Traceability

The best part of a website is you can keep track of how many people are seeing your advertising.Simple counters will tell you how many people have visited your site and you can even find out how they tracked you down.This allows you to see what other types of online visibility are working. Do you have a Facebook page or other social media outlet you like to use? Maybe your business is listed on a review website like TripAdvisor, Yelp, or Angie’s List that allows users to go straight to your page from the host site.You can see what’s working and what needs help.

Contact us today to see how we can help get your website up and running in 2015!

Bianca Frank Design offers a comprehensive brand and brand development package that can be utilized to begin or reinvigorate your small business marketing strategy. Whether you are in need of small business marketing strategies, graphic design, brand design, web design, or just need brand or design consultation on where to start. Drop a note and we will be in touch soon.

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How To Build A Consistent Small Business Brand

Your brand presence is important to your business, for brand awareness, online and print advertising and for marketing your business. Because small businesses often have small marketing budgets, utilizing the power of having a consistent brand will help to maximize your message in the marketplace.

Utilizing an Alaska web design firm that also understands online marketing, brand design, and branded content, will give you small business marketing budget, the biggest bang for your buck.

Brand recognition grows over time and ensuring your brand is consistent across all of your online and print channels is even more important than what your budget is for marketing services.

It is important for your marketing campaign to have a consistent brand across all online channels. Whether you are marketing your brand through SEO (search engine optimization), Social Media Campaigns, Print Advertising or Video/Commercial means…the one underlying and most important element is that your branding remains consistent.

Here’s a quick read on how to maximize your Online Brand Marketing that further explains the importance of brand consistency and online marketing strategies.

Logo Design = Visual Brand or ReBranding for  Small Business Brand

One of the most recognizable parts of your visual brand is your logo. Finding out rules of how to create an effective logo design are an integral first step. Hiring a professional graphic designer to assist on establishing your initial brand, or rebranding an existing brand can help to ensure a powerful and memorable logo direction.

Ensuring your logo is consistent across each of your online channels is crucial. Having a consistent visual brand is essential in ensuring that your company’s visions and mission are reflected.

It should be the same on your website and all your social media pages.

Anytime it comes up on another site, your logo should be the same as on your own site.

If you have partnerships with other companies and they advertise that on their website, send them an image file of your logo and ask for theirs.

Cross marketing accurately is helpful in consistent branding.

Content Marketing for your  Small Business Brand

There is a feel and vibe that comes from the word choice used by companies on their websites and social media.

Depending on the type of business you have, you may have a more fun and light hearted vibe or a more serious and informative feel.

The message of your company can be easily construed on each online channel with carefully chosen words and font choices.

Releasing press releases, weekly blogs, social media content will allow for your branded content marketing to be useful and to further keep your brand consistent. It will also help steer all the media about your business.

Analyze your  Small Business Brand

You can’t know if your brand is consistent unless you’re constantly on the lookout for what’s out there about your business.

Check out any likely places your business name will come up including sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, Angie’s List, and any review site specific to your type of business.

You can’t change what people say but being aware of it will help keep your brand consistent.

Contact us today to see how we can help with your brand!

Bianca Frank Design offers a comprehensive brand and brand development package that can be utilized to begin or reinvigorate your small business marketing strategy. Whether you are in need of small business marketing strategies, graphic design, brand design, web design, or just need consultation on where to start. Drop a note and we will be in touch soon.

Anchorage Alaska Business Advertising Design Strategy

Anchorage Alaska Business Advertising Design Strategy

Anchorage Alaska Business Advertising Design Strategy


One of the fundamentals of growing a business is good advertising and design.
Any business owner knows this and takes steps to ensure their target audience knows they exist. Your message is important and you want your potential clients to see it and understand it. Here are a few key elements that you need to keep in mind when utilizing design in your business advertising strategy.

Create a Cohesive Message in Your Anchorage Alaska Business Advertising Design Strategy

It can’t be said enough – a cohesive message across all of your marketing platforms will ensure your business’s advertising is consistent. If a client goes to your Facebook page, it should have the same look and feel as your own website. Print material should have a flow of ideas, language, and presentation that represents your company’s message as well as agrees with the rest of your advertising efforts. Design is the visual way to ensure all of these media outlets match and give off the same vibe, tone and voice of your company.

Professional Design for Your Anchorage Business

While creating advertising on your own may save you money, it won’t save time and it won’t give your business the polished, professional appearance it needs to get the results you want. Even if you have one simplified ad created by a professional to express your message, reusing that ad in multiple media outlets will still allow you to keep costs down as well as maintain a professional appearance. You can also hire a designer on a retainer basis, where you utilize their knowledge and feedback to ensure your materials are as effective as possible.

As a consumer, we all have multiple options on what company we choose to hire or purchase from. However, most people are drawn initially toward the advertisements that look most professional and put together. Think about how you choose from your available options. Without more information to assess the different options, the better design will draw you in. It looks better, and in turn expresses a more credible company and/or service.

Gaining Results from Your Marketing Efforts | Anchorage Alaska Business Advertising Design Strategy

With the help of a designer, you can see real results when you utilize proper design techniques in your advertising. Markets have many different trends and the design style that is effective in each will fluctuate based on any number of factors. Your target demographic, what your product or service is, or where you are connecting with your audience are all areas a professional designer can assist you. In turn finding a professional designer can not only gain you results but will also maximize your marketing dollars. After all, you get what you pay for.

The whole point of advertising is getting the results you want, which usually calculate to more clients! Make sure you are investing as much time in sending the right message to your audience, as they are in choosing to use a credible business for their needs.

Not sure where to start with design for your Anchorage business? Contact us today to see how we can help turn your message into a client!

How to Develop Your Business Web Strategy

Your Alaska business’s web presence is an important part of your business success.

Whether you use the web just for providing contact information or updating your customers on everything related to your business, there are a few things you should consider.

What is your goal?

You need to ask yourself what is the goal of your presence on the web? Some websites and social media pages are simply informational- a customer searches for a service and gets your FAQ and contact information. Simple. Other websites house information on products, events, customer portals, or athlete bios such as Joey Junker. Other considerations for your web strategy include more elaborate social media which is an excellent marketing tool when used correctly.

Who are you targeting?

Whether you are targeting new clients over existing clients with your web strategy, you will need to consider how information is being portrayed. New clients want to know about the company- the mission, the reputation, and the product.Existing clients want to know about upcoming specials, events, or news that they care about. Targeting new and existing clients is important and keeping a balance between these two targets will give you maximum exposure.

Anticipation

If you are a new company starting out, targeting new clients right now, over the next 3 or 6 months, or even a year, your web presence will need to adapt. An existing customer base has already seen the new company marketing.They want to see your plan for change and they want to see any new and exciting things happening with your company.
Working along with a designer for your logo and website, talk about your options and goals and make sure you are portraying the vision you want your clients to see.

Contact us today to see how we can help develop your Alaska business web strategy!