9 essential things to know about branding your small business in 2021

Updated on May 12, 2021

Did you know that 86% of consumers want an authentic brand personality to engage with? Branding your small business is a powerful way to increase sales and create a loyal customer base. Businesses with a branding structure have a significant competitive advantage.  Branding is the intersection of your brand assets, your brand personality, and your brand identity. By creating higher customer engagement, branding your small business can increase your sales, save you money on advertising, and support marketing campaigns in the long run.  

Branding, graphic design, and business identity design are all related to running a brand campaign, but they’re all separate fields.  While branding involves communicating your business’s mission and goals, graphic design, and business identity design are essential parts of creating unique brand assets.  Working with a designer can be a cost-effective way to start your brand campaign. Rebranding can also be a powerful tool, so long as you need to rebrand. This article will take you through some of the critical points about branding that every small business owner should know.


Branding is the practice of differentiating your business from thousands of others in your industry. With effective branding, your small business is no longer just like any other company. Instead, it is one with a distinct identity, personality, brand promises, and several other intangible attributes that make your business genuinely unique.



Small business owners should invest in branding since the competition is too high, and there is no way other than branding to cut through the clutter and make your voice heard. Small businesses have a tough time dealing with the rising influx of big multinational companies with massive resources that help them effortlessly capture mindshare. However, refraining from branding will only make it worse for your business before you realize your competitors have seized your prospects and customers. Now, if you think that your business is already doing good without branding, imagine what branding could do for your business.



It is possible, but there will be no consistency or uniformity in your marketing efforts. Marketing is only fruitful when the target audience is constantly exposed to and becomes familiar with a consistent communication style. Imagine a business that employs a specific color scheme for its website, a different one for its ad designs and an altogether different social media post. Your brand personality is not clear, your audience is confused, and you are simply wasting time and money with some random marketing that doesn’t make sense. Your small business becomes successful only when customers and prospects can relate to your brand. Repeated exposure to your brand through marketing only produces results if the business has a strong, unmistakable identity. Well-established brands like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, or McDonald’s have evolved with the changing trends over the years, but customers can instantly recognize their brand. They know what to expect from the brand. Branding helps small businesses clearly define the style guidelines that need to be adhered to while launching any campaign. 


  • Branding your small business is essential to stand out in the over-saturated market.
  • It helps realize the full potential of marketing.
  • Marketing without proper branding will not resonate with the audience
  • Once the branding process is complete, it will continue to boost your brand in the long run




The branding process entails several steps such as research, strategy, design, and implementation, so it makes sense to hire a professional branding agency in Los Angeles to develop a coherent brand identity. Nevertheless, here are a few essential points to help you start with small businesses’ branding basics.


1. Your Brand Image is How Customers Perceive Your Business

The word “branding” gets used a lot, but it actually has a particular meaning.   Many business owners confuse branding with logos and mottos, but this is only a small part of branding. The general idea behind a brand is that it’s the sum of your brand assets, brand personality, and brand identity that informs how your customers see your business.  Each of these components is a vital part of any marketing campaign.

Brand assets are pieces of marketing material that contribute to your brand.  Social media posts, package designs, logos, and even your business’s name count as brand assets.  Your brand personality is how your business interacts with customers. Are you formal and professional, or casual and friendly?  

Brand identity is the message that your customer perceives from your company.  This comes from the products you sell, how you word your advertisements, your social media interactions, or any other customer-facing communication. Of course, more sophisticated brand models may include factors like your customers’ brand recall or how other brands recognize your brand. Still, these 3 components make up the foundation of any branding campaign.


  • Your brand is how customers see your business and combine brand assets, brand personality, and brand identity.
  • Brand assets are the parts of your brand that people can see. For example, social media, logos, or package design are all considered brand assets.
  • Brand personality results from how you interact with your customers
  • Brand identity is the values and message that your business communicates


2. Branding can Boost a Strong Product

Just like any part of marketing, branding for solopreneurs can help boost an already reliable product.  It’s essential to make sure that your product is solid and that your customers have positive experiences with your business and services.  Once they have a cheerful disposition to your business, you can focus on crafting your brand and communicating to your customers. Branding is a powerful tool, but it isn’t a substitute for solid products and services.


  • Branding is not a substitute for a good product.
  • You want to make sure that your customers have positive experiences with your products and services.


3. Small Business Branding Drives Sales

When your business or product becomes a brand, it differentiates your company and product from your competition, leading to higher customer loyalty and increased sales. This is because consumers like to personify the places they do business with, and your brand persona is how people see your business as if it were a person.

Your brand is your company’s personality, and by creating a brand persona that appeals to your customer base, you encourage them to use your services and products more frequently.  Similarly, building a brand lets you attract new customers. Curating your brand image will help potential customers to understand how your business’s services can help them and allow you to draw people that resonate with your brand values. A strong brand gives your business a competitive advantage by relating to your customers.


  • Branding a small business will cause an increase in sales by retaining loyal customers, attracting new customers, and making your business stand out against your competition.
  • A reliable brand can attract new customers, so research your target audience and craft a brand that appeals to the right demographic.

4. Branding Boosts Your Marketing Campaigns

Whether digital or traditional, any marketing campaign will be bolstered by a strong brand, with as much as 77% of marketing experts saying branding is critical for any business size.  Whenever a small business embarks on a new marketing program, you have to communicate your value proposition, your company’s values, and more while also competing with other companies.

A strong brand, accompanied by suitable brand designs, will be able to quickly convey what your business stands for, what customers can expect from your services, and why your brand is unique.  Brands like Apple, with an immediately recognizable logo, established brand message, have powerful, distinguishable brands. Apple doesn’t have to communicate its values and principles in every advertisement since its customers are already familiar with the brand image and brand culture.


  • Successful branding can communicate a lot of complex information very quickly with your audience.
  • Brand design is an essential component of expressing your brand values.


5. How to Deliver Your Brand Message

Many small business owners get lost when starting to build a brand.  Fortunately, there’s a wide variety of ways you can craft your brand.  Your social media presence, the logo you choose, the imagery used in advertisements, and even the products you offer can all be curated to help build your brand.


Once you’ve decided what your brand will be, ensure all of your communication activities are based on the brand message and guidelines. For example, a gym that values health and wellness shouldn’t make social media posts about “getting ripped” but instead about how fulfilling it is to be in shape and healthy.  Even things as simple as fonts, colors, and your logo can be intelligent ways to create a branding foundation. Communicate your brand message clearly, and make sure all communications are consistent with your brand.


  • Any time your business communicates, you have an opportunity to build your brand.
  • All of your brand assets should match your desired brand identity.


6. Business Identity Design is Different from Branding

The first thing many people think when they hear “branding” is logos. While logos are certainly a brand asset, they are more part of the business identity design process than branding.  

Business identity design is a significant factor that contributes to establishing your (POD) point of difference. The unique style of communication you choose for your business through logos, design, styling, and associated visuals collectively form your business identity design. 

When creating your visual brand assets, you want to develop themes and patterns that reflect your brand, improving brand recognition by up to 80%. For example, conservative colors and abstract shapes will convey something completely different from a full-color palette with solid images.  Even the font you use for your website is a part of business identity design. Make sure that all your marketing efforts are consistent with your brand to reinforce your branding efforts.


  • Business identity design is the process of creating visual assets for your brand.
  • Anything that has a visible impact on your customer counts as identity design, from your color scheme to the font you use
  • Branding, on the other hand, is the broad process of communicating your business values and culture.


7. Branding is not the Same as Graphic Design

Graphic designers can make visual assets for marketing and advertising campaigns based on brand guidelines.  They are a helpful specialist when creating a brand campaign or designing the visual component of your brand.  When you know what your visual brand assets need to be, you’ll have to customize each one for different media outlets.  Facebook, Twitter, Television ads, and billboards all require their designs, and working with a creative agency Los Angeles will let you implement these visual assets.

Brand managers and graphic designers have minimal overlap.  However, graphic design is an indispensable tool for branding.  While the text is a powerful branding component, images can convey much more meaning than words quickly.  Therefore, you want unique visuals for your company to help differentiate your business from the competition. Working with a graphic designer to get custom brand assets for your small business is a great way to start a branding campaign.


  • Graphic design is one of the most critical parts of a branding campaign
  • Working with a graphic designer will help you communicate your brand with images and graphics
  • Unique graphics assets will help differentiate your brand from your competition


8. Rebranding and Branding Can Be Cost-Effective

Branding your small business, or even rebranding it, doesn’t have to cost a fortune.  Starting to brand yourself can be as simple as the attitude you take in your social media posts.  But it can be a wise investment to work with a branding agency in Los Angeles to create a host of custom graphics for your business.  By having a solid brand image, you’ll build trust with your customers, appeal to new ones, boost your marketing campaigns, and increase your sales.

Making an upfront investment in branding now will save you a lot of money in the long run.  By taking simple steps like creating some simple brand assets, you’ll have a solid foundation to build your brand.  Forming that relationship with your customers can take time, so make sure that you’re starting now, and you’ll see an increase in ROI for your future marketing campaigns.


  • Between simple measures to build your brand and the long-term benefits of having a brand, branding is a cost-effective investment.
  • Working with a professional designer can get your small business the attention and traffic you want, making you a profit in the long run.


9. There’s a Time and a Place to Rebrand

With all of this talk about branding, it can be easy to get caught up and go for a rebrand.  However, rebranding a small business should only happen if your brand is no longer relevant to your customers.  This may be the case if you’ve significantly changed your offerings or if your business has relocated.

If your customer base still resonates with your brand, then consider a refresh instead.  Rather than completely pivoting your messaging, commission new brand assets. Update your packaging or your logo, but don’t start over completely.  Pepsi is a great model, updating its logo and packaging over the past 120 years to remain fresh and sleek. The contrast between their original and today’s logo is stark.

If you’re launching a new product, opening a new location, or you want to reach a new audience, you may want to consider a rebrand.  Businesses change over time, as do their customers, so the brand should be consistent with those changes. Brands like Subway or Instagram continually update their logos and visual assets to keep up with the design tastes of consumers, so make sure that your brand is up to date.


  • You should only rebrand if your brand no longer resonates with your customers.
  • You can refresh your brand by updating graphics assets like your logo without starting a new brand.



Branding is the communication of your business’s values, personality, culture, and assets to your target customer.  Small businesses can drive sales, boost marketing campaigns, and attract new customers with a reliable brand. Business identity design and graphic design are easy to confuse with branding but are separate fields entirely.  

However, working with a graphic designer or, better, a branding agency in Los Angeles can be a cost-efficient way to kick off a branding or rebranding campaign, assuming it’s the right time to rebrand.  When a business does clever companies, essential branding, you forge a loyal relationship with your customers and stand out against other companies without a brand. So how does your business communicate your brand to your customers?

Marketing Revive

Marketing Revive has more than 20 years of experience in branding and marketing for businesses both big and small.  We serve a range of small to medium-size businesses, including doctors, dentists, restaurants, accountants, branded auto dealerships, and lawyers.  Get a free 30 minutes consultation by visiting our website and checking us out on Facebook and Linkedin.