co Branding or Marketing – Which Should You Choose for Your Small Business? |

Marketing vs. Branding – Which Should You Choose?

A lot of marketers make a lot of noise about the importance of branding to your small business. In fact, many small business owners have focused their marketing budgets so exclusively on branding by following this advice, they’ve failed to see results to their bottom line.

One of my small business clients was coached by their former agency to develop an elaborate branding campaign, including custom photography for their materials. At a cost of over $8,000, they had some very beautiful looking materials that did absolutely nothing to drive new customers to their location or to increase their sales.

According to marketing consultant Russell Kern, “as brand content increases, response rates decline.”

In his study, his findings showed that “when offer copy in direct response promotions shifts to lower than 90% (with 10% brand messaging), decreased response rates cause the cost per sale to increase, on average, tenfold or more.”

The small business bottom line: Focus your marketing dollars on activities that truly provide solid ROI for your business. Keep the 90/10 Rule in mind when it comes to marketing (your offer for your products and services) vs. branding.

Source: Target Marketing, April, 2007, page 19.