A to Z of Marketing: B=Branding

The A to Z of marketing is designed to give you a flavour of the multitude of components that need to be considered when marketing  a business.

This week we look at B=branding.

We are all exposed to a multitude of brands on a daily basis, and you will get told by many different people different stories of what a brand actually is.  So here is my take on it.

Brands are more than just logos and names.  Logo’s and names are the badges that represent your businesses but the brand represents your values as a business and run through every single thing that you do.  You need to live your brand – every employee needs to live and breathe your brand values as these will be transferred to your customers through their positive experiences.

How important is the name?  Well the quality of your product and service is the most important element – not matter how good your identity is, if the customer experience is poor you will wither and die.  If your name and logo is poor but the quality of what you do is good – the chances are you will make a success of it but it may take you much longer.

If you have strength in both you have the winning formula of achieving  success quicker.  If you look at an industry leader like TESCO for example – what does the name say to you?  How interesting is their logo?

It means nothing, it makes no sense.  The logo is uninspiring.  However because of the values that they have fostered into their staff, into their stores, into their communications we all associate Tesco with Value.  They are now the number one supermarket in the UK by some distance but it took them a while to get there.

One last thing, don’t try and stretch your brand too far.  Just because you have a strong brand it does not mean that it is easily transferrable into a new product or service area.  Worst case scenario, it could  undo all the good work you have done in building up a strong brand reputation in your core area.  So tread carefully here!

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Ian is the founder of Opportunity Marketing marketing, with over 18 years of experience in successfully setting up marketing departments, creating marketing strategies and implementing these strategies across a wide number of SME companies in both the B2B and B2C sectors through a variety of channels.