Branding: What it Is and Why it Matters
March 11, 2022 by Cady May
If you Google the word branding you will probably see the Dictionary definition pop up first.
Branding is defined by Oxford Dictionary as:
- the action of marking with a branding iron.
“regulations concerning the branding, movement, and sale of cattle”
- the promotion of a particular product or company by means of advertising and distinctive design.
Scrolling further down you might see other thoughts on how to define it:
- “Branding is all of the ways you establish an image of your company in your customers’ eyes,” says Shopify.
- “Branding is the act of connecting a product (or business) with a particular name, symbol, or features and ideas to make it recognizable,” says Renderforest.
- “Branding is the process of giving a meaning to a specific organization, company, products or services by creating and shaping a brand in consumers’ minds,” says the Branding Journal.
Although I don’t totally agree with how Oxford chooses to define branding, I don’t fully blame them since branding can be hard to define. I could argue that their second definition is confusing branding with marketing but it all still sort of relates. Nonetheless, all of these definitions aren’t wrong.
What is Branding?
In order to promote your product or service, there is an overarching brand you are expressing through your promotions, whether you purposefully create it or not. This might help explain why marketing and branding get so intertwined since they are…they overlap, but they aren’t the same. To explain it in simplest terms, marketing is the promotion of your company which is expressed through your brand. Your brand is everything from your mission, values, logo, colors, typography, photography…even how you interact with your customers and employees.
To explain it in simplest terms, marketing is the promotion of your company which is expressed through your brand.
How you communicate your company, in every shape and form, is ultimately creating an image in your audiences’ mind. When you think of Nike, for example, what do you think about? What do you feel? Your reaction comes from your interaction(s) with the brand. From commercials to the feeling and even prices of Nike’s clothing…it all communicates something to you.
The Importance of Branding
The point is, the most successful companies are the ones that know what they want to communicate and strategically embed that into the foundation of their brand. That includes everything from their mission statement to the colors and typography they use to even how they answer their phones.
If you don’t have a strong foundation in place, eventually you’re going to start seeing some cracks. That could be unhappy employees, (yes branding can 1000% relate to culture). It could be decreased website visits or simply a lack of brand recognition with the public. The list goes on.
To start laying the groundwork, you need to know who you’re building your company for and why you are doing it. Figuring out those two answers and how to blend them end up being what holds it all together. You want to retain what’s true to who you are as a company while making sure it will resonate with your desired audience. And while you’re at it, be sure to add some personality to the mix. The modern brand is the humanized one, but we can get to that another time.
The important thing is, in today’s world, consumers need to resonate with a brand more than ever. No longer is the product alone going to do it for them. The marketing fluff with hollow promises is now seen as marketing fluff with hollow promises. Consumers, better yet people, want to be able to trust a company. According to Edelman Trust Barometer, 81 percent of consumers buy based on trust. They want to feel good about their purchase and relate to the brand in some way, feel like it adds meaning to their own lives. With millions upon millions of brands out there trying to stand out, the ones that are, are humanized brands with solid foundations that were strategically built.
So if you find yourself wondering “what is my own brand communicating,” or “my brand needs updates but I don’t even know where to start”, Brasco /// is here to help regardless of where you are in your branding journey. Whether it’s developing a brand from scratch or implementing a new digital ad campaign, we start with the brand first, because we know the brand is everything.