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QuickStart Guide to Rebranding Your Business

News Team

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You took a bold step and started your own business. Well done! And congratulations for turning your dreams into reality. However, you realize that this is when the works commences, staying afloat and keeping up with your competitors is not an easy task.

As a start-up, building a client base, maintaining them and gaining new customers is a hurdle. The need to resonate with these sets of clients requires your start-up to package itself in a way that is easily understood by your target audience and this we refer to branding.

The father of advertising Philip Kotler, defines branding as a name, term, sign or symbol or a combination of these that identify the maker or seller of a product.

Stop! And for a second think of any company that you can easily identify what their business is about. You’ll agree with me that not only can you identify their product or service but also their logo, name of the company, the company colors and exactly what they offer.

As a start-up you should aim to be identified as easily as companies such as Coca-Cola and Safaricom and re-branding is the bridge to cross to that destination and if effectively executed, can elevate your business into greater success.

Rebranding isn’t something to cringe at but rather an exciting opportunity leading your start-up to a higher level of growth. If you master some key aspects in your re-branding strategy, you will succeed and have an edge over your competitors. Some of these aspects include:

What’s in a name

The name of your business is important as it reflects your clients and target audience’s perception of your company and the products or services it offers. For one, you would not want a name that presents you as a joke if your business is more conservative such as the banking industry.

Aim to have a name that is simple, clear, easy to remember and one that communicates the message you want it to, otherwise you risk losing your audience to an identity crisis brought about by something as simple as your name.

Play around with a variety of names and share them with your team or even ask your audience if they would prefer a different name – they can even suggest names too. You would be surprised at the feedback. Sometimes, the company name or logo does not need to be changed. In that case, don’t fix what isn’t broken.

Inform your existing clients

“The purpose of business is to create and keep a customer,” Theodore Levitt. Theodore’s quote could not be any more accurate.  It is imperative to inform your existing clients that you are re-branding while assuring them that services will remain the same if not better.

If you introduce new products or services, keep them in the loop as well and keep your eyes and ears open to understand their reception the same. Remember, it is easier to retain an old customer than to gain a new one.

Create a captivating story

A compelling story appeals to your client’s emotions while being helpful at the same time. This simply means that your messaging should be relatable, clear and avoid jargon. Consumers like reading messages that are easy to digest.

Your story should answer the answer five W’s and H?, which are Who? What? Where? When? Why? and How? Having clear answers to these questions allows your audience to connect with you and understand what your business is about. In every communication with them, boldly refer to these answers and your audience is sure to tell your story for you. These responses also help determine your start-up’s vision and mission statements.

Garnering a great story not only helps showcasing how you are solving a problem, it also aids your company in gaining media mentions for your work.

“Either write something worth reading, or create something worth writing about” Benjamin Franklin

Invest in media training

As your start-up grows so will the challenges you face, crises are not new businesses both big and small. Unfortunately, if not properly managed, they can make or break a business.

Investing in some form of media training on how to handle complaints professionally and how to prevent crises from happening. This training should include the before, during and after a crisis occurs, it can also include the types of crises a start-up in your industry is prone to and provide mitigation measures on the same. It is better to be prepared than not be prepared at all.

The training should involve key members of your company to ensure that all employees are on the same page while answering questions from various stakeholders.

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Business

5-Step Guide to Achieving Effective Communication for Business leaders

Kimani Patrick

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As an entrepreneur, communication is a very important facet if you are going to grow your personal brand and grow your business to the next level

For you, is not just about exchanging information, it’s about understanding the emotions and intentions behind the information you relay and receive.

Effective communication is also a two-way street. It is not only how you convey a message so that it is received and understood by someone in exactly the way you intended, it is also how you listen to gain the full meaning of what’s being said and to make the other person feel heard and understood.

Apart from building trust, being an effective communicator means that your team can rely on you. You will build stronger relationships, employees will adopt your ideas, and you will reduce breakdowns as well as get more results for your business.

Being an effective communicator will also help you to understand other people better and when you understand them, you will relate to them in a meaningful way.

While you already know how to communicate, learning a few simple principles that can be applied immediately will make you an effective communicator and give you a huge advantage in today’s ultracompetitive business world.

Step 1: Be Friendly

When someone steps into your office to say hello, step out from behind your desk to shake his or her hand.

During a networking event or coffee break, don’t hold your beverage in a way that blocks your body or distances you from others. The higher you hold your coffee, the more of a physical barrier you put up between yourself and the person you’re talking to. Hold it closer to your waist, that way you will seem open and engaged.

Step 2: Keep Your Word

Doing what you say you will do when you say you will do it is the highest attainable level of disciple. When you promise someone something make sure you deliver within the agreed upon timeframe. If you are not able to meet your promise, communicate it in good time so that the other party can prepare for an alternative to avoid inconveniences.

Being disciplined in keeping your word communicates to people that you are a reliable and trustworthy person. This will help them want to keep you close and conduct business with you.

This also extends further to building your positive reputation and people will find it easy to recommend you whenever an opportunity shows up.

Step 3: Be Clear and Never Assume Anything

Assumptions are a major problem in communication, whether they are self-fulfilled assumptions or merely assuming that others see things in the exact same way that you do.

Never assume – the fact of the matter is that most people do not see things the way you do, nor do they have the same feelings as you do. The less you assume, the better. This falls in the category of making your communication is always clear.

Step 4: Be Authoritative

Even if you are friendly and down to earth, your relaxed attitude should never overshadow the fact that you are in control. When you are introduced to someone, stand tall, extend your hand, and introduce yourself by saying your name and what you do.

To sound authoritative, speak in a normal, conversational tone. And if you are a female, watch that your voice doesn’t rise at the end of a sentence as if you are asking a question or seeking approval.

When stating your opinion, use the authoritative arc, in which your voice starts on one note, rises in pitch through the sentence and drops back down at the end.

Step 5: Learn How to Talk Business

If you are trying to get someone to open up then try using open-ended questions rather than yes or no interrogations. When reviewing your own tactful, analyze how you approach people. Do you bully them with close ended questions or do you ask them in a positive manner how the both of you can make necessary changes to get a project, for example, moving more efficiently.

The more effective you can be with you communication the more successful you will be – personally and professionally.

Have more ideas on effective communication? Share them in the comments’ section below.

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5 Murdered in South Africa as MTN, MultiChoice and Shoprite shut Branches in Nigeria amid Protests

News Team

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Five people, all foreign nationals, have been killed in the ongoing Xenophobic violence and protests in South Africa.

The violence which erupted late last week has seen businesses owned by citizens from other African countries looted, property damaged and truck drivers from neighboring countries being targeted and torched in the violent attacks.

South Africa – Pretoria – 29 August 2019 – Calm restored in the Pretoria CBD following burning of foreign owned shops. Photo: Africa News Agency / ANA

In a retaliatory move, Nigerian protesters took to the streets of Lagos on Tuesday evening to vent their anger by throwing stones and destroyed properties owned by SA brands such as MTN, Shoprite and MultiChoice.

Dozens of shoppers descended on Novare Shoprite Mall in Lekki, near Lagos, Nigeria and looted goods of unknown value while torching a police truck. Several other SA owned stores including PEP, MTN were looted and property destroyed in Surulere and Jakande.

Following the protests, South African television group MultiChoice has shut its offices and branches in Nigeria and Zambia, “We have had to shut branches and offices to safeguard customers and staff until further notices,” said its head of corporate affairs Jabavu Heshu on a statement on Wednesday morning.

On its case, MTN Group said it had closed its stores and service centers in Nigeria “as a precaution” after four stores in Nigeria were attacked on Tuesday evening. Sources indicate that the company also closed several stores in Johannesburg. The company, in a statement condemned the acts of violence.

Shoprite Holdings said in a statement on Wednesday that several stores in South Africa, Nigeria and Zambia were closed and extensive damage had been done to several supermarkets over the past 24 hours.

“(Shoprite) is highly concerned about the acts of xenophobic violence against foreign nationals that sporadically flare up and the resultant rhetoric of intolerance that is levelled against foreigners and the platform this creates for criminals to exploit this,” the company said in a statement.

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Business

Go For Gold: Lessons From Chris Kirubi

Inversk Review

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As an entrepreneur, you have to pursue and attempt to achieve the very best possible outcome or reward from the same activity, task or endeavor. Below is advice transcribed from a few of Chris Kirubi’s #AskKirubi show.

Gold is very symbolic to mean the fine things in life. You don’t find gold all around you, but you find at least somewhere close to you. Very scarce indeed. Does that mean it is not meant for everyone? It’s all in your mind. Reach out for the best possible solutions. Reach out for the biggest venture. Reach out for the biggest investment.

Gold is a great reward. Great things don’t come easy. You will struggle to get to it, but the fruits will be there. To be the best, you have to effect change. Don’t be afraid to effect the change. Within our comfort zones, we as entrepreneurs might feel like we have actually achieved it all. When that feeling crosses your mind, that’s when you need to move and effect change. Change is the only constant thing in the world.

Don’t say you can’t move. When you get that mindset, you will be poor. The worst thing you should avoid is being poor in the mind. Do not conform your mind to weak struggles. Conform your mind with strong struggles such that you will put more effort in your deeds. Challenge yourself and out great effort into that. Then expect great rewards.

Arm yourself with knowledge. Knowledge should be your weapon whenever you want to attack and get huge profit margins. Be hungry for knowledge and do not shy away from wanting to know more.

Go for quality. Quality begins with you. Be quality. Don’t be shady. How you look, is how you act. From what and how you dress, to how you carry yourself and interact. Look quality. Talk quality and expect nothing less of quality anywhere you venture into. When you are quality, you will definitely attract quality.

Build your own stature. No matter how difficult it may seem. It will cost you but it will be worth it. Do what you will be proud of. Quality will definitely make you a proud person.

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