What is Branding?
Branding is the set of actions taken to build a brand.
Your brand is the set of perceptions people have about your company. What the story behind the brand is, how it makes them feel, what the mission is, etc. Made up by a name, symbol, design, term, or other feature that distinguishes your company from others.
It helps build customer loyalty and attract the right type of person to the business. Beyond that, it helps to determine pricing. If the message in your branding is luxury, your prices are going to reflect that - and your customers will be more than happy to pay for it.
Why is branding so important?
Builds brand recognition.
To create a successful brand, you need to recognizable. The right branding helps you carve out a distinct style and increases your brand recognition in the market. This includes an impactful logo, website, and other brand assets.
Helps you stand out from the competition.
Branding helps establish the ways your company is unique, different, and special. It shows potential customers why they should buy from you instead of a competitor.
Sparks a connection with your audience and turns that audience into loyal customers.
The most successful businesses foster an emotional connection with their audience. This transforms a prospect to a customer and a customer to a super-fan. The secret to building this connection - branding. Different strategies such as color psychology or voice (sharing your company’s story and mission, or an overarching goal that they can be a part of - something bigger than your company) can help you connect on a deeper level and create a sense of loyalty to your brand.
Creates a consistent brand experience for your customers.
When a customer interacts with your company, they must have a consistent experience every time. Whether this is in-person, on your website, on social, or even on the phone, they need to have a consistent experience. Branding allows you to control how people perceive and experience your brand.
With this, know what to avoid:
Don’t give your customers mixed messages.
Don’t copy your competitors.
Don’t lose consistency between online and offline.
What are the elements of branding?
Mission statement and brand values.
Your mission statement and brand values are the foundation of your branding. They provide the framework for the message you want others to see about your company. The mission statement defines the present state and the purpose of the company, while the company’s vision provides the inspiration and motivation for what you seek to achieve in the long term. These need to be clearly defined and integrated into your branding. It is the message that you are trying to put forth in the branding.
While the vision and mission statement are the framework of your company, the brand guidelines encompass everything else. This document outlines the colors to be used, the typeface, logo, proportions, and how everything can be used. It also includes an outline of your brand voice. This helps to ensure the consistency of the brand image. It allows your marketing to easily be on brand and consistent with what you stand for.
Your logo is the face of your company. One of the most important elements of your brand. It portrays the feeling of your company just from a glance. It doesn’t need to be complex - some of the best are simple. During the design process, think about who you are as a brand and how you want to be perceived.
Your website is one of the ways customers will interact with your company online and it is an essential branding step. Key elements for your website; needs to be visually engaging, easy to use, and a reflection of who you are as a brand. Refer to your brand guidelines when creating your website.
Depending on the type of business you have or the industry you’re in, you may need additional assets such as business cards, event flyers, product packaging, etc. It’s important these asset follow your brand guidelines to maintain consistency.
Better Branding = Better Marketing
Branding builds longevity into the business. Products by nature have limited life cycles, but a great brand can stand the test of time. When you nail down what your company is as a brand, it becomes a lot easier to market it.
Marketing is the process that brings in sales, but branding is the foundation in which your reputation and customer loyalty are built.
Your branding guide speeds up the process of asset creation, as it guides the messaging and the design elements - making it easier to maintain consistency.
Your brand is the set of perceptions people have about your company.
It helps you stand out from the competition, builds recognition, creates a consistent experience for your customers, and sparks a connection to create loyal customers.
The main elements of your brand are design, values, and consistency.