When you go shopping, why do you buy a certain product over one made by its competitors?
How have the makers of that product been able to convince you that theirs is the best in the market? Or perhaps how have they convinced you that they are the only ones who can provide a solution to your needs? Branding – how and why A key aspect of branding comes down to being able to set yourself apart from others. The ‘brand’ is the promise to
deliver the same bundle of benefits (products & services) consistently. A good brand will not only deliver the bundle consistently but also deliver the message clearly, confirm your company’s credibility, connect to your target prospects emotionally, motivate the buyer and establish user loyalty.
Internally within your company, you need to increase revenues, have the rightpeople working for you, groom talent togrow, eliminate waste in all aspects ofyour business, and innovate faster than the competition and also ally with the right partners.Here again, the brand comes into the picture. Human beings are prone to pass judgment or make initial perceptions of everything. This usually determines whether or not one will want to do anything with your company, and hence it is difficult to shake of first impressions let alone bad ones. It is this behavior that influences how existing or potential customers and decision makers choose between alternatives open to them.
To succeed in branding, you must understand the needs and wants of your customers and prospects. You do this by integrating your brand strategies through your company at every point of public contact. The biggest mistake a company can make when defining its brand is listening to its own needs rather than those of the customers. Constant reevaluation is a requirement in defining the brand as change is inevitable.
Take the example of drinking water. Companies have us believe that municipal water tastes bad and is not purified enough. They have us believe that even though some of the bottled water manufacturing companies are based in India, the water comes shipped from the Swiss Alps, have added minerals or that flavored water is good for you. That’s how they have successfully branded themselves.
Importance of developing a brand
Brand development is the ethos that your company stands for and must be made the foundational piece in your marketing communication. In order to perfect the image and message of your brand you must do the research to determine your target audience and how you want to be seen by that audience.
Take for instance, your objective is to position your company as an industry leader. What measures should you take to achieve this? You could perhaps have members of your company speak at trade shows or events, schedule lectures at professional group gatherings within your industry, or write and publish articles in newspapers, magazines or online media. Once you’ve determined your objectives, the next step is to build and develop your brand strategy by listing out how, when, and what you are going to do to accomplish and meet those brand objectives. Also, you need to define how you are adding value and nullifying the competition. Most importantly, you need to keep revisiting your brand and making sure that it is reflecting the mission and goals of your company. Brand revision and recreation can either add life to your business or destroy it. Hence, it is very necessary to manage the process well and continuously.