The term proprietary eponym is probably not in most vocabularies. It means a brand has become so common, its name has replaced the more general term for a product. Kleenex, Xerox and Pampers are all examples of proprietary eponyms.
This is brand domination. Your brand will probably not reach this level of awareness, but you still want to do all you can to put it in as many minds and memories as possible.
Here are six easy ways to spread your brand without a lot of work.
Set Up a Referral Program
Let your current users and/or customers spread your brand for you. Sweeten the pot with a nice reward when they do. Foundr is a digital subscription-based magazine for entrepreneurs. Periodically, special editions are offered to subscribers when they refer someone. Dropbox gives free space for referrals. PayPal, when it launched in 2003, gave out money. Dollar Shave Club gives a month of free razors with each referral.
What of value can you give for referrals?
Run a Contest on Social Media
You’ve seen these. Usually they involve photos of pets with the invitation for people to vote on the cutest. When contestants enter, they will post your contest all over the place, just to ask for votes. Jack Daniels and ModCloth clothiers are two other brands that hold regular contests. Winners have been featured in commercials or given an item of value.
Use PPC Marketing
There is a lot of competition in the SEO world, and people rarely go beyond the first page of a Google search. Get your brand front and center with some PPC advertising. It’s smart. You don’t pay unless users click, and, even if they don’t, your name is still seen at the top of the search page.
PPC can also be great for B2B generic searches. Kelsey Poe, Director of Marketing and Sales for CMP Corporation, a company that makes and sells HVAC/R compressor parts and remanufactures HVAC/R compressors, states, “Our PPC campaign is one of the backbones of our overall marketing strategy. We have a limited target audience, so we want to be the first company name on that search list.”
If you have never engaged in PPC advertising but want to get started, study up on it a bit first.
One of the reasons Upworthy has such a following on social media is because it knows how to tell stories that are emotionally compelling, inspirational or hilarious. There are several brands that are great at this. Headbands of Hope is a for-profit business focused on sales and on children with cancer. It has a Wednesday story featuring a little girl with cancer wearing a donated headband.
Participate in Events
This is especially important for local businesses, but larger companies use national events as well. Here are all of the things you can do:
- Support a local charity by being present at one of its events. Promote the event on your site, your blog, and your social media platforms, asking readers to spread the word about the event by sharing your posts. Your name gets spread, and you are also doing good.
- Give away freebies with your brand name and logo.
- If you are local, get a car wrap that promotes your brand. Drive it around town and park it prominently at events.
Have a Daily Post That Is Funny or Inspirational
Nathan Chan, CEO of Foundr Magazine, grew his Instagram following from 0 to 10,000 in two weeks. If you take a look at his Instagram presence, you will see that he posts great sayings, and he does this every day. Followers come to read his inspirations and share with their own communities (there are also some incentives for doing this). If you can have a quote-of-the-day or joke-of-the-day, you’ll increase following, shares, and sales.
These are just six of the many ways to build brand awareness. But they are simple and you can start with a few right now.