The Basics: What is Branding?

I have been working with entrepreneurs and business owners to create income producing brands for quite some time now. And, one thing that I have noticed is that the word "brand" is being tossed around way too much.

It seems that everywhere you look someone is talking about building a brand, or marketing their brand. It's definitely the new "it" thing! But, do you really know what a brand is? I have found that many people do not. So, before we get into the tips and tricks that I will be sharing on my website (be sure to subscribe for updates), I want to make sure that we at least know the basics.

What is the process of branding and what does it really mean? Should you start with your logo or website? After all, the term "brand" is all inclusive right?

Let's start here. A logo is not your brand, nor is it your identity.

Brand, branding, and brand identity all have different roles, that together, form a perceived image for a business, services, or product.

What is a Brand?

Again, the word "brand" is used pretty loosely these days. You hear refer to a "brand" when they talk about a business' logo, website or products. But, actually, a brand is a set of intangible assets of a company, service, or product. It is the definition of an emotional relationship between customers and the business.

A brand is a person's gut feeling about a company. It's the way that you make them feel and the imprint that you leave on them after they have had an experience with you, good or bad. It's what you promise to your customers and if you actually deliver or not.

What is Brand Identity?

So, if your brand is what they think about you, when you're not in the room, then how can you influence what they think? The answer to that is your brand identity.

Brand identity is tangible. It is all the things that appeal to your senses. You can see it, touch it, hold it, hear it, watch it move. This is where your logo, website, business cards, merchandise, etc come into play.

The goal of your brand identity is to find things that tell your story and engage people with who you are in a familiar and meaningful way. That means that ensuring that every time your artifacts show up, they are consistent in their appearance, use, size, scope, color, feel, etc.

What is Branding?

We know that you don't design a brand, you build a brand. Branding is a process. It is the process of getting your audience familiar with your brand identity in order to create a positive brand. Branding can be a game-changer and although it depends on the other two elements mentions, I personally think this is the most important part! After all you can have the best reputation, product, service, logo, and website, but if you do not know how to get it in front of the right people what's the point?

Now that you know what a brand really is and what it consists of, take a moment to think about your brand. Which aspect do you think you need the most help with? I would love to hear from you all. And, of course, for more branding tips and tricks, be sure to subscribe and check out my website for free downloads!

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