Ben Wise on Branding

Watching the world through the lens of the brand

Small Business Should Still Thrive

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I am sick and tired of hearing about the ways big corporations are ruining small business. It is astounding how often you hear someone complain that the little guy just doesn’t stand a chance.

The reality is that that simply isn’t true!

Small businesses continue to thrive even as companies like Walmart and Home Depot move into town. For a small business to succeed (and really for any business to succeed) they need to differentiate their brand from competitors – sounds simple, doesn’t it?

I came across a great example of this on the weekend. We were talking to someone who does flowers for weddings. But that isn’t her full-time gig – with her husband, they operate a family run dairy farm.  If ever there was an industry where it is hard for the little guy to compete, farming is it. Yet they aren’t just managing, they’re thriving.

How do they do it?

It all comes down to understanding their capabilities and how they are different from their competition. While the dairy farm is their main business, they have a lot of land that they can put towards other uses, such as gardening. And she doesn’t simply provide wedding flowers. They create extremely unique arrangements that you can’t find anywhere else. When we were speaking with her, a woman came up to ask her about a product she bought six years ago, with a price tag of $600! This old customer loved the product so much that she had tracked down the florist/farmer to get another one.

Gardening wasn’t the only way they differentiated themselves. They also made beautiful ironwork for landscaping and sold excess lumber. They looked at what they had or could produce, then they looked at what their competitors were doing and pinpointed where they could be different. Gardening and ironwork are things that big farms simply can’t do.

What do you think? Could your small business brand be more unique?


Written by benwisebranding

May 5, 2010 at 8:35 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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