This article is a guest contribution by Adrian Steel Marketing Manager Todd Goldmeyer. Adrian Steel is a nationwide manufacturer of commercial vehicle upfits.

After surviving the recent recession, it’s tempting as a contractor to believe that everything is on the upswing and you no longer have to struggle against other companies for business. Unfortunately, this is not necessarily the case.

The recession left potential clients feeling more cautious about how to spend their money, so it is vital that you present your business in a way that shows that you are a cut above the rest.

One of the best ways to accomplish this is to focus on your company’s brand. While “branding” can include a visually pleasing logo and a catchy jingle, developing a comprehensive and cohesive brand involves creating a reputation for being a top-notch company. Your brand should demonstrate the quality customer care and service that your business provides and should give your customers the feeling that you stand out in the industry as a true professional.

The Value of Branding

Your brand is the core of your business and it encompasses everything from your logo to how you answer your phone to how organized and prompt you are. Everything you do as a contractor contributes to your success, and developing a noticeable brand benefits your business in a multitude of ways. First and foremost, it creates a positive image for both current and potential customers to latch on to. Your success often hinges on differentiating yourself from the competition, and having a recognizable brand will do just that.

Effective branding will also help your bottom line. When a customer knows exactly who you are, he or she is far more likely to be confident in your products and services and will bring you repeat business as well as new customers who find you through positive word of mouth. Good branding also makes customers perceive you as more effective, valuable, and trustworthy, which will encourage them to spend their money on your services rather than on your competitor’s.

How to Effectively Brand Your Business

Like any aspect of business, good branding starts from the ground and works up. The most important thing you can do to develop an effective brand is to focus on the nuts and bolts of your business, including organization, customer service, efficiency, and professionalism.

When you start with the basics, you will have a good foundation to support your business before you ever consider the advertising aspects of branding. You can have a fantastic logo or advertising campaign, but this won’t help you much if your customer service is poor or if you show up at work sites disorganized. The best thing you can do for your company’s brand is develop a reputation for being a punctual, efficient, and well-organized business that offers the very best customer service during all aspects of a job. After you’ve established yourself as the best company out there, focus on creating a marketing campaign that reflects your business at its core.

Don’t Forget Your Work Van 

When considering how best to develop your brand, don’t forget about your work van. The state of your fleet says a lot about the state of your company and a disorganized vehicle will not reflect your company favorably. When a client sees you pull up in a van that is clean, well organized, and equipped with the highest quality equipment, they will know they are dealing with a highly professional company that does quality work.

One of the best ways to ensure your fleet sets a great impression is by investing in high quality upfit packages. Upfit options include lockable cabinets and drawers to keep your tools exactly where you need them, aluminum toolboxes and ladder racks, and partitions to separate your cab from your tools. To ensure that you are installing the highest quality upfit packages, check for the following key points:

  • What materials are used?
  • Where is the company located?
  • What is the company’s mission statement?
  • What is the company’s reputation?
  • Does the company offer a comprehensive warranty and/or guarantee?

Investing in the highest quality upfit packages from a highly reputable company might cost you a bit more up front, but the benefits will far outweigh the cost. Your work van is a critical component of your company’s brand. With high quality equipment, your company will develop a high quality reputation.

About Adrian Steel

Located in Adrian, Michigan, Adrian Steel is the premiere company for all of your commercial vehicle storage solution needs. Since opening their doors in 1953, Adrian Steel has installed upfits on over one million vehicles and has been committed to providing quality products highlighted by constant innovation. Their strong reputation in the industry is matched only by their resolve to offer the best lead times and highest quality product. Their products are durable and reliable, with warranty claims on less than 1 percent of sales. Adrian Steel warranties cover their products for three years or 36,000 miles. Learn more at