Building Your Brand Online for the Long Term

Building your own brand online consists of a lot of small steps (and a few big ones) designed to put you in a position to gain trust and authority for yourself online. You may have the best shop in town, but if you don't have an online presence, you simply won't exist for anyone that doesn't know that or searches online.

There are a few basic differences between offline and online, and one of the most important things you need to know is that things online can happen almost instantly, so it would be a good idea to be prepared.

Let's look at four steps to get you going with building your brand online.

Four steps to start building your brand online

Getting your brand known and trusted by the Web is the task set before you. Use these steps to help you get there!

Know who your audience is – You might have a good idea of who you want to appeal to, but this is the time to do some research and see not just who your ideal customer is, but who you will be in competition with for their consideration.

Building a web presence – You will need a domain name for your brand that reflects your business, as well as web hosting to put it on. Get a proper website built, and don't opt for a free site that you see advertised. These are just subdomains of another company's site, and you won't really own anything.

Establish Social Media accounts – Social media is very important these days, because it can have a positive effect on traffic, authority, search ranks and much more. Deciding which social sites to use is up to you, but most likely you'll be using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. Create a presence on these sites and be sure to have a consistency in your contact information across each of these as well as your website. Having this last element wrong can really cause search engine problems so pay attention to it!

Create content and engage – Begin posting and publishing across your new Web properties. This will seem tedious and unfruitful at first, but it's an important step. Cross promote from one to the other. For example, announce a new blog post on Facebook or Twitter, etc. Once you start to have people comment and engage with you, you are ready to take your brand to the next level, that of establishing authority in your space, a topic for another article!