What is Brand Marketing and How Can It Help Your Business?
What’s in a name? For many businesses, the name is the brand, and the brand represents an enormous amount of time, energy, thought, and money invested. A brand (or brand value) can be a significant asset on a balance sheet. More importantly, brand recognition can be a critical factor in consumer purchase decisions. A strong brand can be a driving force behind sales that will continue to strengthen your business over time.
But what exactly is a brand? Technically, a brand is a symbol, logo, mark, name, word, or phrase that businesses use to distinguish their product or service. But in reality, a brand is much more. It’s a feeling or emotion evoked in a potential consumer. A brand represents the essential qualities of a business in the minds of future buyers; it encompasses the perception that consumers about a company and its product or service.
Indeed, in just words, colors, shapes, and consistency, a brand embodies company goals and philosophies. It is a representation of the mission of a business, the culture, the uniqueness of the products or services. A brand is the heart and soul of a company, inseparable from the product or service.
Branding vs. Marketing
Branding and marketing is deeply related, and both facilitate the overall success and growth of a brand. Still, they are distinct entities that need to be strategic and cohesive as a unit for your company to grow.
Branding is the core of your competitive strategy. It spells out what makes your company, brand, or product unique. It is a relatively stable idea about why your company exists and what it stands for.
Marketing refers to the tools or message delivery systems of your brand. It is an active part of business and company development that reflects the changes in the marketplace. Your marketing plan should cater to the priorities and preferences of your target demographic, and it should shift as the profile of your target customer shifts.
Branding and marketing are universal problems that can easily be overlooked since they often have fewer tangible factors than other data-driven decisions and are so reliant on the feelings of a customer base.
What is brand marketing?
The definition of brand marketing is actually quite simple. It is the process by which companies cultivate long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with their target customer.
Brand marketing promotes the overall brand, linking the brand – the logos, the slogans, the colors, the sounds – to the philosophy, the values, and the qualities of the business. By linking the brand to the values and unique qualities of the company, the brand develops its personality.
Brand marketing is rooted in boosting brand recognition and reputation. If you can elevate your brand, you can raise your prices. Brand marketing must weave throughout every fragment of your business: your communications, sales, products, and services should enhance your brand promise and values.
Tips to start your company’s brand marketing research and implementation? Analyze your internal company data and then read external perceptions of your brand. This includes product reviews, social media interactions, and testimonials. Understand how your brand is perceived from the inside out.
Approach brand marketing as storytelling. It is an opportunity to craft an origin story for your brand and communicate its purpose with authenticity and honesty. Be sure to explain why you are so passionate about serving your customer base through your product or services.
Steps to developing a solid brand strategy:
Brand strategy is one of those terms that gets tossed around quite a bit without being delineated fully. It is a crucial piece of the brand marketing puzzle, though, because it fleshes out your entire approach to brand cultivation and communication. Brand strategy answers the questions: how, what, when, where, and to whom are you communicating and delivering your brand message? Here are eight steps to pinpointing your brand strategy.
- Define your purpose. Why did you start your brand, and what compelled you to offer your product? What about your brand and mission separates you from your competition?
- Be consistent. Whatever you articulate as your purpose, communicate that with the same tone and personality across all messaging systems.
- Identify and research the target customer base. This is a hugely important aspect of your brand strategy development that involves figuring out who you’re selling to, what they care about, and how your product or service can better their life. This relates to positioning your brand or product in the marketplace.
- Connect with your customers emotionally through solid messaging strategies and brand positioning. Once you understand who your target customer is, tailor your marketing strategies and language to them. Explain how you can solve a problem and communicate that on a platform where they spend time.
- Remain flexible. Continue to examine data and readjust your approach slightly as you implement your brand strategy. You’ll never arrive at a final solution; marketing and brand strategy will always demand that you continue to maintain, optimize, and improve your approach to strengthen sales.
- Get your employees involved. If you have employees, build them into this brand strategy development process. No one knows your brand better than the people who grow it every day.
- Reward your loyal customers. If you have the attention of a loyal customer base, do everything in your power to keep them invested in your brand. Offer deals, coupons, and incentives to keep coming back and investing in your brand.
- Know your competitors. You should have some idea of who they are from the first step of brand strategy development. Still, be sure to keep up with what your companies are offering, how they are trying to separate themselves, and gain traction in the marketplace.
These eight steps will inform your brand marketing, help you succeed in differentiating your brand, and develop your unique brand voice and style.
Why is brand marketing relevant?
Brand marketing is the key to increasing brand equity and creating long term higher sales and profit. The better, more compelling your branding is, the more you can charge for your products or services. Brand strength is based on a customer’s understanding, expectations, and affinity for your brand and its standards. Developing thoughtful branding and brand marketing is a long term game, but it sets your company and product up for longevity and capital that will grow over time. Remember that there is an intrinsic value to brand equity.
Intelligent brand marketing is a magical moment where story-driven feelings and emotions meet data analytics to create a strategic plan for growth that is true to a brand’s mission.