The difference between a regular product and a great product is just one thing – branding. Branding is the reason when someone is having people over, they go buy Coca-Cola instead of a regular soda, it’s the reason when a person wants to appear trendy, they go for Adidas, Mango etc. rather than everyday brands. The difference between the products may not even be so apparent, however one has a clear advantage over the other. This is also particularly due to the fact that with most of these products, an experience is associated either through first hand recollection of when one bought the product, or through latent messages in commercials and advertisements which make us reach for the product in stores when we are out to buy things. This is particularly the reason behind branding, which consists of all of the minute details on the social media pages of these products and companies, to the wording of their catch-phrases and slogans- allin effort to make an experience of it in our minds.
A brand can be defined as a characteristic or group of characteristics of a product that sets it apart from all other products in the same category. It can consist of various things from the symbolic gestures of logos, symbols, trademarked designs and patterns, to auditory ones from catch-phrases and slogans, songs etc. used during advertisement and marketing. Branding is generally seen as the interaction of a customer with a business and the overall experience that they gain from it. The process of branding is a difficult and
time-consuming one. Due to being iterative in nature, it expects a uniqueness to it that comes from the business itself so that it can set itself apart. Branding is almost always the difference between a profit and loss for business, and according to global statistics, people prefer to buy from brands that they know of or are renowned.
There are concepts which are linked to branding, which when kept in mind,make the process of branding more precise and effective. The main six concepts as highlighted by Ruya Global are asfollows:
This is basically a measure of how popular your brand is and just how much the general public knows of it. It can be increased by making your brand trendierand more popular. It’s highly important to focus on brand awareness because if customers do not know the brand exists, they won’t consider buying from it.
Brand extension is when companies introduce new products and categories of production into their line of manufacturing. It helps in making the production line more diverse and gives various opportunities from the generation of revenue. It is a way to incorporate inclusion, that the brand can cater to various needs of the buyer.
Maintaining a brand once its been created comes under brand management, which is one of the harder aspects of branding. This is particularly because due to social media and changing trends on an instantaneous basis, keeping abrand relevant and well managed is highly important.
Brands should be marketed in such a way; the consumers can recall and identify the brand without having to see its logo or name. This goes hand in hand with brand recall which helps brands be associated with traits in our memory based on experiences without the minute details.
Customers should have a certain degree of faith in a brand, in order to buy its products and continue buying them.
The value of a brand is also something that can be associated with branding, the higher the brand value the better the branding. It is commonly seen as the commercial value of the brand as a result of collectively taking all of the above concepts into account.
There are certain ways to build a strong brand, which mostly deal with branding as an iterative process. To make a brand strong, the brand must be unique,have a clear audience to target, set achievable goals and be flexible enough to stay relevant in the changing trends. Following are five ways to create a strong brand:
- Determining a target audience is one of the first steps in creating a strong brand. Strong branding leads to more popularity, recognition, trust, relevanceand commercial value. All these come from one single source- the customer. When a brand resonates with an audience, it is a sign of branding done right. Which is why it is important to know what audience the product is targeting so it can be brandedaccordingly.
- Establishing a mission for your brand is the second aspect. This can also be seen as creating a niche for your product in the competitive market by givinga
distinct reason why it is different from all other similar products and should be the priority pick. The mission of the brand is its essence and should be reflected in all aspects of its branding.
- Associating a visual with your brand. Visual assets play a large part inthe brand popularity and brand recall aspects of branding. This is because visual aspects tend to remain in our memory and are easily associated with product experience above all other factors. This includes design of the brand, catch phrases, designs and combination ofcolors.
- As with the visual aspects of branding, the auditory component isequally important. Think of it as how your brand would speak if it was personified, like giving a voice to your brand which helps people connect to it and relate their experience. Consistency of tone and story are very important when creating a history for a brand which should go hand in hand with itsmission.
- Making your brand work depends on the effort you put into it. With the world turning into a global village with international markets, spreading your brand across various platforms is highly vital. The ways with which one chose to spread their brand, and how they do it, is linked to the brand identity and brand mission.Socialmedia,packaging,salesandserviceaswellasadvertisementall make great platforms for extending the reach of abrand.
Conclusively, branding when seen as an iterative process done from the heart and in a methodical way can actually pay off in great profit for companies and individuals. It requires using both tangible and intangible aspects to makeyour brand stand out from the rest. It is a time-consuming process but if done right, success isdestined.