Millions of words and hundreds of scholars, professionals and academics have been devoted to summing up what branding is. But a brand is more than words on paper or a logo. It’s a combination of elements – from the packaging it comes in, to the way it’s advertised and communicated to its audience, strapline, design and identity; and ultimately its reputation and customer service all play a part in how the brand is perceived by its customers.
I recently heard someone summarise branding in a really succinct way:
This really resonated with me as I truly believe that creating positive, personal customer experiences are the essence of good branding and best practice. Essentially, a brand is a fusion of its image that means something to its target audience, and the brand identity that you (the brand owner) wants to portray. You’ve got to put the work in however, to add value to the customer’s experience of your brand by creating positive associations to the brand that your customers find reassuring and in some ways beneficial to their lives – be it for personal or business use.
For many of us, a brand is a ‘promise’ – we know what to expect from our favourite brands and we keep coming back because we feel the quality and service we received is better than a comparable brand. This is brand loyalty. A quick way to demonstrate this: think of some brands, such as Apple, Nike, Mercedes. What do you think they promise to their audience?
So this is what I think, based on personal experience and learnings. What do you think a brand is? Please leave me a comment below!