Branding and marketing. Two of my fav topics, but I know they can often be confusing for people getting started. The two are connected, but you need to understand their differences in order to successfully use both.
So let’s get started by defining branding:
“A brand is essentially a container for a customer’s complete experience with the product or company.”
-Sergio Zyman, Author of The End of Advertising As We Know It
Take a second to let this sink in – your brand is the complete experience someone has with your company. Your brand comes from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be. Your brand is developed through every touch point – this includes your logo and colour palette, but also how your answer your phone and even how quickly you respond to emails. To understand branding, think of your brand as a person with its own personality. Keep in mind that everything you do communicates. Even if you think you haven’t been actively building a brand – a brand is still being built, because it comes down to how your customers perceive you. Your brand is the most important asset you have and it is what will turn a buyer into a loyal customer.
Marketing, on the other hand, is how you deliver the message and promise of your brand. It is the act of connecting customers to products, with the goal being to sell your product or service. While branding is strategic, marketing is more focused on the tactical.
Marketing is constantly evolving, and depending on your audience, you may choose to market your product or service using a variety of traditional and digital methods. Your marketing strategy could incorporate things like printed brochures or posters, social media, email marketing or pay per click advertising.
So which comes first?
Since your brand is part of the core of your marketing strategy, it needs to come first. Remember, your business will have a brand associated with it whether you put in the conscious effort to develop a strong one or not. Taking the time to define what your brand looks like is vital to ensure you’re using the correct marketing strategies and tactics that will resonate with your audience.
Need some help getting clear on your branding? Set up a FREE brand clarity action plan call and we can chat about where you’re at with building your brand and what you need support with!
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