If you think of some of the top brands, chances are you think of the ones with the iconic logos and names, such as Starbucks, McDonald’s, and Coca-Cola.

Establishing brand recognition is something that has value. In fact, brands account for over 30% of the stock market value of companies listed on the S&P 500 index. For example, when Imperial Tobacco spent $7.1 billion to expand into the U.S., most of the money was spent on purchasing brands that were already widely recognized throughout the U.S.

However, what if you have a smaller or local business? Can you successfully build a brand? How can you compete when getting the same recognition behind the bigger, multi-billion-dollar companies?

Some tips that will help you build your brand and boost your search engine ranking can be found here.

Target the Publications in Your Local Area

Who is talking about your business or brand? This is something that matters. Even though being mentioned in The Wall Street Journal is great and can provide a significant boost, local sources are usually better.

In most local areas, people are turning to local news sources to find local information. This means if you get your brand mentioned by one of these local publications or linked to, you are building name recognition through the publisher’s audience.

Target Hyperlocal Publications (Even the Smaller Ones)

Targeted, niche or hyperlocal publications may be easier for you to get into, all while proving to your client base that you really are local. You can find local publications that target certain people, such as moms, or those who are interested in certain things, such as eating out. Being linked this way can provide you with invaluable citations and links back to your business.

Get Mentioned in Various Reviews

Your business’s reputation is not what people tell you they think of your brand; it is what they say when you are not around. Today, this happens each day through several review outlets. By now, you understand that reviews impact decisions for about 67% of consumers.

Quantity is something that is important to Google when it comes to how popular your business is from an independent third-party customer. While up to 90% of consumers may leave a review is you requested them to, only about seven percent are asked. Request that your customers leave a review on multiple sites, including Yelp, Yellow Pages, TripAdvisor, Google, and others.

Bad reviews also matter – to both public perception and to search engines. Manage the bad reviews individually and understand that generating more good reviews can help cure the bad ones.

Building Your Brand

When you are working to build your brand, you have to consider many factors. However, by having a local focus and taking steps to appeal to the people you want to sell to, you can achieve more success. If necessary, work with a professional company that can help you achieve your branding goals, regardless of the type of business you own.