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Branding or brand development is the strategy of creating a unique name, logo, and symbol to differentiate a business or product from others in the market. Branding goes beyond logos and symbols though. Brand development is all about creating a lasting image on customers and potential customers. It is what you want your customers to say about you; their impression of you. Your brand is your personality. It is influenced by how you look and everything you do. The colours of your website, the way you deliver your products, how your Christmas card looks, it is all a part of your brand.
Brand development is very essential, and here are six reasons why.
As stated earlier, brand development is creating a perception in the market. Developing a great brand is one of the ways to raise awareness for the brand.
Diesel, a fashion brand was able to raise a lot of awareness as a startup because of their branding. Diesel branded itself as a designer for young, funky and creative people. They sold pre-knackered jeans, very different from what was available in the market at the time.
If you create a brand that is distinct from others, it will make you noticeable and will ensure you last longer in the memories of potential customers.
Building trust is one of the greatest advantages of brand development. Big brands in the world, such as Apple, Nike and so on have built their brands over the years. It is the reason why people will queue to buy the new iPhone; they know what they are going to get.
When your brand has a message that it has preached and lived up to for some time, people trust you to deliver.
This is the reason why you might allow your children watch a Disney movie but you will hesitate if it’s an HBO film. These are both big brands but they are known and trusted for different reasons.
Brand development involves continuously making a promise and fulfilling that promise. You continue to do this to the point where customers know what to expect from you. When this happens, you have earned their trust.
When customers can trust your brand, they will stay loyal to you.
Loyalty is when a customer drives past several pizza places to get a box of pizza from his favourite pizzeria. This happens because the pizzeria has something he likes. It could be their sauce, or their service or their prices. It all part of their brand.
To build a loyal customer base, your business has to be known to exceed customer expectation.
When you do this with great success, you gain customers who will spend more to buy what you sell.
The resources and effort you put into building your brand will determine how much value your customers will attach to it.
A business or person that leaves their branding to chance either does not know how important their brand is or do not place a great value on it. If you don’t place a great value on your own brand, the customer will not.
Apple treats their iPhones as the best in the market. This shows in the way they market and sell them. It shows in the way they package them. It shows in the way they announce every new model. It is not surprising that consumers place a premium value on iPhones.
Proper branding not only attracts customers to your product or service, it raises the value of your product or service.
Your brand creates an expectation. There is something a customer expects when they pick up your product or use your service. They can only know what to expect from the image you constantly put in front of them.
Using the example of HBO and Disney, there is a certain expectation consumer have from both brands. They both put out great but very different content.
It will be detrimental to Disney, known as a family brand to have raunchy scenes in Tangled or Beauty and the Beast. You will not be shocked, however, to see an HBO show have sex scenes. It is all expectations based on their brands’ promises.
It does not matter how much you spend on marketing and advertising your product, your business can still be made or marred by your staff. The people who work for you have a lot to do with how your brand is perceived.
If you sell your brand as a fun brand with strong customer service, it is up to your people to deliver on that promise.
The culture of your business influences your brand and your brand influences your culture. If your brand is known to be emphatic on healthy eating and fitness, your employees, in keeping with the brand will always present a fit and healthy outlook.
Google is a brand that is known for creativity. This influences how the offices in Google are set up. It influences what their policy is on dressing and break times.
If you put time and effort into your brand development, it will rub off on your employees and the culture of your business.
Branding is too important to be left undone. Your business has a brand whether you consciously build one or not. Take control of your brand by deciding how you want to be perceived and constantly putting out that message.
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