Not only is dropshipping one of the best affordable home business ideas, but it’s also an inexpensive business model that doesn’t require you to produce your own goods. However, due to its digital nature, dropshipping success is heavily reliant on online marketing. If you are not connecting with customers and offering them things (such as content and financial deals) that other virtual retailers are not, why should anyone buy from you? Dropshipping is all about branding.
What if you have been in business for a while, though, and are struggling to make ends meet because you are not practicing effective marketing strategies? You cannot simply open a store and hope that rigorous social media posting will attract consumers to you. Startups obviously have plentiful opportunities for branding, but it may not sound simple for retailers that didn’t tend to the basics when they were getting started. That’s okay, though—you can still cultivate an appealing brand late in the game.
Think about your brand voice
Your brand voice encompasses elements like your logo, visuals, verbal persona, attitude, slogan, and more. Think of it this way: if you wanted to order a washing machine online and found one for the same reasonable price from two different companies (and with the same shipping times), would you go with the one that has an aesthetically pleasing website and clever slogan, or the one that looks like an amateur coded everything? The former’s brand voice spoke louder and made you more comfortable transacting with them.
If you do not have a strong brand voice, think of ways to make yourself more appealing and distinguished by reading this 7 branding ideas for your new startup business. Consumers are wary of faceless corporations and companies that are unsure of who they are. If you want people to purchase from you, you need an identity. You might have a loose one already, so think about how you can “sharpen” it into a more recognizable and friendly persona.
Be on the right social media platforms
You know you need to be on social media—but are you directing your energy toward the right platforms? Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and LinkedIn have different audiences, so it’s worth examining if you are tapping into each in the most advantageous ways possible. Depending on your niche, you might have more luck on one than another (such as if you were trying to connect with college students on Facebook when many of them are migrating over to Instagram).
Optimize your profiles
Put thought and care into your profile pages. Do you have your contact information on your Facebook page? Is there a link in your Instagram bio? Are your profile pictures recognizable on all social channels? Some online retailers spend too much of their time executing social media campaigns that they neglect to polish their actual profiles, which are like the “home base” of your branding environment. If your profiles look incomplete, people will assume you are an untrustworthy business (and possibly with no sense of direction).
Look at what strategies weren’t cutting it
Research what successful dropshipping businesses have done and compare your strategies to theirs. What were they doing differently? As of now, you might not interact with your followers enough, post at the right times, follow the right people, or something else. If you are going to revitalize your brand, you need to look at what was dragging it down and assess how you can give it new life. Doing so requires honesty with yourself, a willingness to change, and a passion for what you are selling (which might, ultimately, be the thing that is missing).
Tell different stories
The most effective marketing understands the power of storytelling. What is your brands narrative? Why are you passionate about the products you sell? Your story should not be a fabrication, of course, but people appreciate when they can connect with their favorite merchants.
Also, examine how you approach your products themselves. Branding Strategy Insider says: “The deer industry in New Zealand renamed its venison offering ‘cervena’ to differentiate it from deer meat sourced from elsewhere and to make a strong country-of-origin play. If you’re selling copper and everyone else is selling copper, what can you call your copper to distinguish it from what people can source anywhere.”
However, renaming will not be enough. In cervena’s case, the change “spoke to an idea that consumers were interested in, and eliminated the concern, amongst American consumers, that they were eating Bambi.” What makes your products different? This is especially pertinent to dropshipping because you and other retailers might be selling the same products from the same suppliers. What can you offer that your competitors don’t?
Successful dropshipping is heavily dependent on marketing, but you can catch up on the branding process to where it needs to be. How will you revitalize your dropshipping brand?