How is your brand going to evolve in 2010? This is a question that every would-be successful business owner must ask in order to move forward. Markets change, and your brand must change with them. For many businesses, modifying their brand to appeal to a constantly changing customer base involves expanding their line of goods.
Sarah Rogers, who runs a handmade jewellery business, is one small business owner who is using this principle with great success. Her Dragon and Phoenix range offered relatively inexpensive products that initially were big sellers. However, sales began to slow down. Rogers noticed that people were still buying, but buying less with every purchase. Her answer was to expand her offerings so that customers would be more likely to buy several items at a time.
Rogers continued offering her Dragon and Phoenix brand, but added a higher cost Sarah Rogers Signature line. These jewellery items are intended as ‘milestone purchases’, to mark special occasions. With this higher end line in place, Rogers felt more comfortable adding a few less expensive pieces to her Dragon and Phoenix line to woo the value-oriented shopper.
The result is that people who walk into Rogers’ shop have a large range of goods to choose from. If they are looking for a special gift, the signature line is there. If they want a less expensive impulse purchase, they have options as well. Because these items are in separate ranges, each with its own brand and logo design, the expanded line of goods does not diminish either brand.
The results have been nothing short of spectacular. This winter, the Dragon and Phoenix line sold out, while the store continued to make steady sales of its more expensive goods as well.
Business consultants acknowledge that changing with the market is essential for success. A plan that was perfect for the 2005 market is no longer perfect for the 2010 consumer. The only way to maintain a foothold in the market is to continue to change as well. With customers more value-conscious, this can mean offering a lower cost option for impulse buying, or a higher end product that offers luxury and quality.
This may mean narrowing your other offerings. An essential part of expanding your line of products is first determining what goods are selling well. If you are losing money on a certain item, it is time to either reposition it or drop it without sentimentality. Once you know what items are selling well, you can offer more goods in that line.
Sometimes expanding your line involves more than offering a high end choice. Julie Maxted, of The Pets, Homes and Gardens Company in West Sussex found that many people were interested in opening a home and pet minding company similar to hers. Her newest high end product is a ‘business in a box’, which basically is everything they need to open a business like hers in their own area. At £6,995, this is a huge business opportunity for the customer as well as for Maxted.
If your business is struggling to make it through the recession, it may be time for a change. If you are unsure of how to proceed, a branding and fashion logo design consultant can help your business evolve in a way that supports your brand, rather than diminishing it.