At BlueMelon, we live and breathe branding. But, what really is it? Is branding soley a lavish marketing tool designed to make money out of unwitting business owners, or is it the key to thriving in an ever-evolving marketplace? Read on to find out everything you need to know about branding and why it is important…
What is branding?
Branding is so much more than can be summed up in a single word or sentence.
Branding is everything, in relation to, a single entity.
A brand is more than a logo, it’s an aesthetic; a brand is more than a name, it’s a language; a brand is more than a product, it’s a promise.
It’s judging a book by its cover and the quality of the content within it.
But…what does that really mean? And how can it be quantified?
In truth, you can’t fully quantify branding, because a brand is a perpetual process that will continue to evolve as both you and your target market evolves. What is right for your business today, will be different in 5-years’ time.
In a nutshell, you can think of a brand as the vessel that transports you from a daydream to genuine business success – because you can have a million-dollar idea, but without a brand, you ain’t going anywhere!
- An ongoing process: your branding should never stop evolving. As people, markets, and businesses are continually changing, so too must your brand evolve in order to keep pace and remain relevant.
- Identity, creation, and management: there is a crucial structure to quality branding and that is identifying who you are, what you create, and how you manage your position in the global marketplace.
- An accumulation of your assets and actions: the positioning of your business translates to your assets, i.e., your visual identity, the content you share, the product you promote, and the adverts you use to deliver your message. It also includes your product / services, the way that you interact with your customers, the level of support that you provide, and the experiences that you create.
- The perception of your product / services and business: your brand is your reputation. How do people perceive your business (including investors and business partners)? Everyone who interacts with your business, in one way or another, builds their own perception of your brand – and interacts with it accordingly. So, what can you do to help shape, and indeed, leverage that perception?
Why is branding so important?
Branding is critical because it is the glue that holds everything together. Again, you can have a million-dollar idea, an exceptional workforce, the best manufacturers, a solid logistics team, and all of the ‘get-up-and-go’ necessary to manage a business…but, without a believable brand, it all falls to pieces.
Think of as many Fortune 500 businesses as you can; Apple, Coca-Cola, Nike, Google, Ford, and Disney. Now remove their branding and all you’re left with is phones, soft drinks, sportswear, a search engine, cars, and cartoons.
It is their brand that promises a certain level of quality. You know precisely what to expect when you crack open an ice-cold bottle of Coca-Cola on a hot summer’s day and there are very few other soft drinks that can make your mouth water quite as much with merely the thought alone.
That is why branding is so important.
Branding increases business value
Branding is paramount when you are trying to not only generate future business, but also establish increased leverage within your chosen industry.
The result of a quality, well-mapped-out branding process is a brand and business that includes a solid reputation and the irrefutable value that comes with it.
A strong reputation means a strong brand, which in turn, equates to a higher, more tangible value. That value can subsequently increase price premiums (nobody but Apple can get away with charging a huge sum of money for a pair of headphones), and mindshare (the awareness of, and therefore, typical market shares of a product or brand).
You can also read our guide on how to create a brand strategy if you’d prefer not to rely on luck when it comes to your success.
Branding delivers new customers (and retains existing ones)
A good brand will never have any issues with attracting referral business. The strongest branding delivers positive impressions and those existing customers are likely to want to continue doing business with you, and indeed, refer your products / services to friends and family.
It is that familiarity and dependability of using a name that they can trust which keeps a business afloat. In truth, once a brand has truly established itself, they can rely on word of mouth alone almost entirely to stay afloat.
Related article: 3 ways to cultivate brand trust by being more human
Branding guarantees employee pride and satisfaction
A brand is so much more than what your customers believe. It’s also about what your employees feel. The best brands are worn like badges of honour. Employees who have a positive interpretation of the brand that they represent will not only work harder to promote it, but preserve it as well.
This translates into superior leadership, greater involvement, and better products and services across the board. It will help keep the spark alive between you and your brand.
Then, the snowball effect takes hold and as your employees continue to fall in love with your brand, the overall quality of your business grows – and customer satisfaction rises with it.
It’s a win-win-win!
Branding creates authority and trust within the marketplace
Going back to the fortune 500 companies mentioned above; when you think of a search engine, which one springs to mind first?
Branding helps you find the right way to not only earn a certain level of trust between your company, clients, and stakeholders, but maintain that authority as well. It’s like creating a blueprint for a quality product and then colouring it in with proof.
Get started by downloading our free template for a brand positioning statement.
It would be far easier to show you branding ourselves!
The fact is, we could sit here and talk to you about the importance of branding all day, but it would be far easier (and beneficial) to simply show you. Not only can you refer to our existing clients and testimonials for social proof, but you can also talk to us for a free consultation as well.
Book a virtual coffee with us today and we’ll gladly talk you through the ways in which we can bring your business to life, give your products / services a voice, and ultimately transport you from a daydream to genuine business success.