Volume 12, Issue 2 - March/April 2008

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Branding Your Website

Hopefully, by now you have made the commitment to create a website. You have chosen your domain name, selected your hosting package and perhaps even gathered some digital photos. But how do you develop the required appearance and content that will set your website apart from a cast of thousands?

Before I address this issue, you should ask yourself a question: “Does my window film company have a brand of its own?” If so, developing the appearance and content of your website would be a natural extension of your brand. Your company’s website is another component of its brand. Coca-Cola® enjoys the highest brand recognition in the world. That scripted white logo on a red background is worth billions and most everyone across the globe recognizes it. The company’s website is no exception to this brand rule. Visit www.coke.com and you’ll be taken to a world of refreshment, colored by red and white, with images throughout of that patented bottle design. Maybe you’re not a giant, like Coca-Cola, but your website should be no different. Put yourself in the web surfer’s shoes. What does he expect to learn, see or hear when visiting your company?

Building a Foundation
Choose your categories, sub-categories, images, testimonials, client list and everything else that will go into your website. For an effective site, your content should build upon your brand image by using these details. For example, if you are a boutique automotive tinter who churns out two cars on a good day because you mask the car with protective paper and remove door panels to ensure a tight film fit, be sure to describe your meticulous methodology and include supportive photos of the process. While you may have no formal brand image, your areas of expertise can become your brand image and should be well-communicated within your website.

The design should compliment your company’s logo. If your company doesn’t have a logo, have one created. LogoBee (www.logobee.com) offers customized logo design starting at $249 with a five-day turnaround.

When designing the appearance of your website, your web designer can use his own imagination or he can choose a canned template from a source like Dream Template (www.dreamtemplate.com). What-ever path he chooses, the design should complement your logo.

The more your website resembles your company’s brand, the more successful a marketing vehicle your website will be. Even though we’re up to our elbows in window film every day, remember that the product can evoke emotion. Whether enhancing the appearance of your car, preserving the life of your home’s furnishings or saving you money on your utility bills, window film addresses a real human need. Communicating this need in a branded forum is the best way to have a prospect request more information. 

Three of Manny’s Picks:
Window Film Depot
www.windowfilmdepot.com
This company’s website is a good example, because it serves as an extension of its brand. There is a blog and the colors used are consistent with all of its marketing pieces.

Sunray Window Films
www.sunrayfilms.com
This company uses animated clouds at the top of its home page and the design matches all of its other marketing pieces. 

Tint Plus
www.tintplus.com
This company serves the flat and automotive markets, but its website shows that auto is its main focus. There is also a virtual showroom, an effective logo and photography.

Manny Hondroulis is marketing manager for Energy Products Distribution in Baltimore. Mr. Hondroulis’ opinions are solely his own and not necessarily those of this magazine. If you have questions, e-mail Manny at mhondroulis@epdwindowfilm.com.


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