Company branding is important to success, it is often the small details that make a real difference to both the customer and your business partners/affiliates. Developing your brand can be an expensive process if you are looking to get a bunch of print material and visually market your business, however there is so much more to branding than having business cards, t-shirts and mugs. First and foremost branding is about your reputation with your customers.
As soon as you start acting upon the idea of starting your own vending business, you are building a brand reputation, whether it is intentional or not. If you want to be professional when delivering placement pitches to location owners, you should know as much as you possibly can about the business. You should know the ins and outs of the business, from how often you plan to service, to what products you are going to stock, even what commission percentages you are comfortable with if they ask. Appearing educated,knowledgeable and confident about your business is very important to building your professional brand appearance.
Good customer service is vital to building a good brand name as well. In the vending world that would translate to keeping long term and healthy business relationships with location owners, and keeping your machines sanitary, stocked and in perfect working order. Even the amount of candy dispensed from machines factors into the brand, will your customers think of you as a cheapskate or generous in your portions? Having clear communication channels, and regular and reliable servicing schedules will keep business owners and customers happy.
You wouldn’t want to do all of this work without people knowing who you are, so having some printed information is needed in order to market your company. Each employee should have some business cards on them to hand out to location owners and customers, in addition to a company t-shirt to wear while on service runs and company business. www.vistaprint.com offers very affordable and customizable products such as business cards and t-shirts.
If you are interested in having a logo designed there are a few cost effective solutions depending on how much you want to spent. 99 Designs offers design services where you post a project and people respond with designs and you pick the design you like. This makes it easy to find a good design that matches your desired look. Typical cost is around $400. Next is UpWork where you can hire a designer overseas for a low amount of money. This however is limited to the number of revisions you agree on and a single designer. Expect to spend 50-100 to get the logo done. Finally there is Fiverr.com, on this community everything is $5. So you can try various designers for $5 a logo and come up with something you like. I tend to prefer using Fiverr to generate ideas for how the logo should look, then take those ideas to Upwork and have someone refine the logo quality. Sometime I have them mix and match elements.
Small vending businesses are not in need of much more, a website would most likely just eat up a chunk of your time and money that would be better spent somewhere else. If you can rustle up a free blurb in the local paper to promote the charitable angle of your business, then by all means go for it. Don’t be afraid to come up with out of the box ideas such as free candy giveaways, prize drawings and anything else that can work to promote your brand and solidify a good reputation in the community.
Company Branding for a vending business falls completely to the way you and your employees choose to represent the business. Being knowledgeable, professional, courteous, confident and reliable in conducting business will do wonders to building your brand. Check out Traits of a Good Vending Employee for more information.
You can build your brand and reputation by coming up with professional conduct guidelines, business practices and very minimal financial investment in marketing materials.