Are you a small fish in a big business pond, determined to stand out and get noticed, despite your size? That’s a great goal to have and easy to achieve, with a few strategic moves to raise your perceived professionalism, in the eyes of your consumers. You may be reluctant to spend capital on polishing your image, when money is tight and resources are scarce, but don’t let that stop you. We can show you a few simple ways to give your business a professional makeover, without making a large a dent in your finances? If you want to give customers the impression that you have your act together and can serve them as efficiently as a larger, more established business can, then do read on.
Give your company an attractive visual identity and a strong voice
If you want your brand to be easily recognized, get someone to design you a contemporary, smart-looking logo. It should represent you visually and stand out amidst the clutter. Then set basic design and communication guidelines in place, such as templates for stationery, corporate colors, your company’s tone of voice when addressing customers, and rules for how your logo should be used. Once you enforce these guidelines across online and offline communication pieces, your brand identity will be more standardized and people will begin to recognize and recall your company. Don’t try to do all of this yourself, unless you’ve completed a four-year graphic design course. It will be far more beneficial and economical for you in the long run, to hire a small agency or a couple of freelancers on contract, to create your brand identity.
Have an online presence
Even the smallest business these days has a website. The number of web hosting companies and platforms are on the rise and a high level of competition is driving down prices. This means you can pick and choose from a variety of hosting packages and domain name providers, at a rate that suits your budget. Choose a domain name in line with your business, and get someone to design a basic website that attracts potential customers, offers clear details about your product or service, and highlights your contact details. You can even use cloud telephony to implement a ‘click-to-call’ button, by putting a small widget on your website.
Get a company email id
Your email id of firstname.lastname@example.org may not have fazed early adopters of your product, but the time has come to move beyond that. Opt for an email id that is easy to remember and easy to spell, without any numbers or special characters. Make sure you answer all inquiries that are emailed to your company account.
Interact on social media
Sign up on Twitter; create a Facebook page for you’re your company and a LinkedIn profile. Feel free to respond to queries on Quora related to the area of your business. When customers tweet complaints, get in there and respond with an apology. Then work on resolving the issues that those customers are upset about. The great part about many social media platforms is that you can sign up for free.
Invest in business cards
You may think that business cards aren’t very new age, but believe us they are vital for networking and make a good impression on business associates. These days it is very affordable to print simple business cards that highlight your contact details. The advantages are well worth the small price you pay.
Get a virtual phone assistant that never misses a call
To cater to the growing needs of a growing customer base, you’ll need a dedicated business phone line. You don’t have to invest in any telecommunication infrastructure. Instead, you can opt for a toll-free number from your cloud telephony services provider. It’s really cost-efficient and will encourage more people to call in. Then add in an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system, that will pick up every single call and give those who dial in, a menu of options to choose from. After working hours, callers can even leave their number on voicemail for you to call back. An IVR is like an assistant that never sleeps and never misses a call. There’s no better way to show how professional you are, than by ensuring that customers can always reach you.
Connect via voice conferencing
Hold meetings with your suppliers, or business associates, over a voice conference call, facilitated by cloud telephony. Some providers including Knowlarity, offer this service absolutely free of cost. It’s very efficient and a great way to get everyone on the same page.
Operate out of a professional space
Stop running your business out of your apartment. It’s time to get a company address instead. If you can’t afford to rent a commercial space, choose a business center that offers you all the facilities of an office, including an official address for your official correspondence.
Well, that’s it. Follow the simple steps above, to stand apart from the competition, and project a professional image that impresses customers and other associates. It’s time to swim with the big fish and maybe even overtake them.