What is Branding?
Branding is a practice in which a company markets itself to be recognisable. This may include factors such as the business’ trade name, logo and promotional ploys and merchandise. However, successful branding may also be achieved through excellent customer service and effective advertising, which would increase the success of the business as a whole.
Branding is also essential to businesses that trade publicly (PLC), as the brand itself can increase a company’s value, due to the reputation it has. The value of the brand may actually be several times the value of the stock of the company, therefore it is important that the brand is strong to ensure that trust and value are retained within the business.
The most important aspect of successful branding is the company’s logo. The logo should be universally acceptable, representative of the service and recognisable. As well as being symbolic of the company’s views and values, the logo must also be versatile in its form. It should be easily transferable to promotional merchandise, which may include: business cards, buildings, online advertisements, uniforms and the product itself.
The design of the company’s logo is also crucial to a brand’s success. An example of this is Coca Cola’s Share A Coke campaign. The hugely successful marketing campaign removed the brand name from the standard Coca Cola bottle and replaced it with hundreds of individual names. This clever variation of the classic label image connected the target market and the company, thus proving that the brand image and the logo of a business can become interchangeable if the brand is strong enough.
Business experts have claimed recently that the future of branding is personal; it revolves around the accountability of its CEOs and staff. Personal branding doesn’t necessarily involve every aspect of a company’s employees’ social lives, but rather focuses on the image and trust we as consumers associate with the face of a business. For example, companies that claim to be environmentally friendly should also have directors and officials that portray the same values. This in turn creates a trust between endorsers and consumers by promoting the brand as authentic.
Over time, a company may find that they are becoming less relevant to the demands of the market. At this point, they may choose to rebrand. Rebranding is a process in which a marketing team may devise a new name, logo or slogan in order to inspire new interest in a business. However, companies should be mindful of straying too far from their existing brand image as a complete shift in focus may indicate instability or a lowering of standards to the target market.
After an effective brand is established, word of mouth will be the most important factor in a business’ success. This is due to the effect that the branding has on the perspective customer’s opinion of the business. Is it trustworthy? Good quality? Value for money? Effective branding should convey all of this.
Getting your brand right from the offset is a difficult task and shouldn’t be taken likely, though it can should you should have a clear image and direction you wish to take when branding. If you’re thinking about branding or considering a rebrand talk us at consider the team at Leblek. Our Branding & Graphic Design knowledge and experience is on hand and we’re more than happy to help, just contact us today.