What is branding?
Moin! I’d like to introduce my new blog where I’ll be discussing topics that relate to the business Moin Agency is in: branding and digital marketing.
To organize things, I’ve decided to start off addressing topics from 30,000 feet before later delving into the details.
It has been 25 years since I graduated from MICA with a BFA in Visual Communication. Back then, the term “branding” wasn’t as common as it is today. Look up branding on Wikipedia and you’ll find two main categories:
- Physical markings
I find it amusing that physical markings precede marketing. Obviously, I’m interested in exploring branding in the marketing realm. When I ask people about branding they seem to understand the concept—but not what it actually is.
Here is a definition of “brand”:
“A brand is a name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers” ~American Marketing Association
This is a very broad and vague definition. Don’t you agree? Branding is so much more than this and that’s why people struggle to understand it.
The umbrella concept of branding includes the items below and how they work together with the goal of creating a connection with the customer and identifying products and services.
The goal of branding is to:
- Deliver a clear and honest message about what your brand is
- Establish credibility in your marketplace
- Connect with your customer on an emotional level regarding the product or service you provide
- Motivate the buyer to make a purchase
- Establish loyalty with your customer
Who impacts your brand?
Consumers, employees, shareholders, and third parties all play a vital role in why the customer chooses your product/service over your competitors. You must make your customer understand that your business is the sole solution to their problem or need. In other words, branding is a problem-solver.
Branding + your customer
Without branding, there are no customers. It’s all about understanding who your customer is and what their needs and wants are. Your brand strategy should make certain to identify how it is integrated at every touchpoint with your customer—through your choice of design, imagery, layout, internal and external messaging, and more.
How can you evaluate your brand?
Clients frequently ask, “How do I know if our brand is a strong one and how can I tell if our brand is working?”
These questions should be examined from three different perspectives: internal branding, external branding, and the customer experience. For me, the starting point is to ask them the following questions in return:
- Does your brand relate to your target customer? Do they know what you do, without having to think too much about it?
- Does your brand effectively convey your special product or service?
- Does your brand keep its promise to your target customers, as well as employees and your internal audience?
- Does your brand reflect your company’s ethics and values?
Why is branding so important?
Your company’s brand is its single most important asset. It provides an identity, makes it memorable, encourages clients to buy from you, supports your marketing and advertising, fills employees with pride, and serves as the foundation upon which your company is built.
We like to describe your brand as your company’s fingerprints.
How do you create a brand?
- Define your business why
- Establish your mission statement
- Define your vision and values
- Identify your target customer
- Identify your brand story
- Find your brand voice
- Create your visual assets
- Begin using your brand
If you are struggling with where to start in developing or strengthening your brand.