In any business, there are the expected branding opportunities, television commercials, radio, signs in the store, and even employee shirts. But some unexpected branding opportunities give you a chance to make your brand stand out.
The first thing to consider is what your brand manifesto requires. Is it fun, innovative, brash, friendly, kind, or in your face? Now look around, what’s an everyday item that you can make special? For instance, almost all businesses use receipts of some sort – what does yours say about your brand? Most have the company name, some might have a logo, and very few find a way to be unexpected. This is your opportunity to stand out from the crowd.
Shop Local Anyone?
Say your brand manifesto is about shopping locally – can you cross-promote other local merchants at the bottom of your receipts – or on the back? What about offering local trivia on your receipts? If your brand is friendly or kind, can you offer a compliment of some sort on the receipt? Chinese Fortune cookies have done this for years – and even people who don’t like the cookies often break them open to find their fortune. Why not do the same thing on your receipt?
What about your customer’s trash receptacles? If your brand is about the environment or resources, you ought to make sure you’ve got recycling options available – and don’t stop just at making them available put messaging to reinforce your brand on them. That way you’re getting twice the play, you’re saving the environment, and you’re making sure that your brand is getting the “credit.”
Branding Opportunities for Holidays
Pay attention to the national holidays – find a way to celebrate them with your customers. I was pleasantly surprised on April 17 (Earth Day) to find myself shopping at Target. When I was checking out, the cashier offered me a free reusable shopping bag for my purchases in celebration of Earth Day. While I probably wouldn’t have noticed it was Earth Day, my heart was warmed by the gesture – and note, I’m still talking about it. So pay attention to the big holidays – but pay even more attention to the small ones. What can you do make yourself and the holiday memorable?
If your brand about working with a (or a series of) charities then, you’ve got a golden opportunity. We’re all familiar with the round-up ask at the cash register (which by the way is an excellent way to raise money for your charity of choice), but why not find a way to pair your charity with your product in some way? Can you set it up so that when your customer buys widget x you donate 5% of the profit to charity y? How about a sale that offers your products at a slightly less than typically reduced cost, but gives school supplies for local schools every time a purchase is completed.
Find a way to make it something in return, when your customers do something and charity gets something. Then tell the charity what you’re ready to do and ask them to tell their supporters. You’ll find people walking through your door you’ve never seen before because the charity sent them.
What can you do to interject your brand into unusual places and spaces? Because it will make your brand memorable and create a little buzz, which all brands need more of. What unexpected branding opportunities have you seen that have made an impression?