What is Branding?
According to Luke Summerfield of Entrepreneur Magazine, “Branding is the process of forming memories, emotions and a relationship around your brand in the consumer’s brain.” It is also the act of creating a positive effect on customers to understand and find what you do or sell. A brand can highlight a product or service, or your whole company. You can have a product, a service or business brand. There is even a personal brand when people market themselves. Your brand is whatever someone thinks of when they see or hear your brand name. Branding can happen through advertising, publicity or public relations, helping to increase visibility and awareness of a company and their products and services.
Brand identity is the visual characteristics, such as your company name, logo, colors and design features that describe your company and what you sell. Brand identity improves recognition and helps to show your value to consumers.
Using Familiarity in Advertising
The Mere Exposure Effect is a psychological occurrence where people begin to like something simply because they are exposed to it over and over. They also develop a preference for people or things that are more familiar to them. Repeated exposure increases familiarity. This effect is also known as the familiarity effect. Brand familiarity is proven to promote a feel of confidence and then usually given preference over other similar brands. Many successful companies repeat advertising campaigns for this very reason.
Branding is incredibly important to a successful marketing campaign. If you have something that is easily recognized, chances are that consumers will interact with your business and buy your products or services. Brand equity is when you gain value from customer’s positive perception. Your brand can tell a lot about your business. When you hear the words Coke® or Pepsi®, you probably think of your favorite refreshing cola drink. You will also have a strong brand when customers refer to your product or service as a noun, such as Band-Aid®, Kleenex® or Jacuzzi®. The same thing happens when they use your brand name as a verb, with examples like Fed-Ex®, Google® or Xerox®. A powerful brand name can improve sales, help a business grow and give them name recognition as a preferred brand.
Get Your Customers to Talk Up Your Brand
Brand advocates are people who always talk positively about your company or your products and services to others, and you don’t pay them for their endorsements. The goal is to build such a strong connection and belief that the consumer takes on your brand identity as their own. They use your brand to help define who they are as a person.
Examples: People who live for Disney® or Harley-Davidson® Motorcycles or mothers for the Honest Company®.
Describe Your Brand
You can help define your brand when you answer the following questions:
- Describe your ideal existing customers and potential customers?
- What messages do you want to say to your target audience?
- What exceptional products, services or skills do you offer?
- What do your current customers like about your business?
- What distinguishes your company from other companies?
Get to know your target audience. You want to focus on keeping your current customers satisfied while at the same time looking for new customers. Research why your products and services are what the customers need. Understand your business role and how you differ from your competitors, then communicate that to your audience.
Ways to Keep Your Brand Strong
Create a consistent environment throughout all your platforms. Make it easy for your customers to identify you and stay loyal to your brand. Communicate your brand to the public through various media, both online and offline. Use promotional items such as advertisements, brochures, signs, along with your webpages and social media sites. Another way is to always offer exceptional customer service and support, well beyond what they expect. All of these efforts help promote brand recall and will remind customers of the benefits of dealing with your company. Brand loyalty will follow.
Keep in touch with your customers. A phone call or a personal meeting will help strengthen your brand. Don’t just communicate by email, voicemail, or social media. Always give your audience high quality and relevant content to keep their attention. Reach out to your community and engage with people at local events. Go to public events related to your industry, such as trade shows. Actively build relationships with people who can influence others as well.
Using social media regularly is a great way to connect with your customers and keep them interested. Every person that follows your online sites will remember you and will likely continue to interact and do business with your company.
Also, consider offering a rewards program to keep your customers coming back. Show them that you care about their business and that you are always available to help them. Reaching out to your customers will help build up your brand.
You can grow a brand through smart marketing even when you don’t have a big budget. Direct mail advertising is a popular and cost-effective marketing strategy to make customers more aware of your business. It will give your company an image that identifies who you are and what you do. Direct mail is a proven marketing approach that will help build up your company’s reputation. You will develop a stronger brand, keep customers happy and have consistent sales.
Millennium Marketing Group has years of experience in direct marketing and specializes in developing effective campaigns for many companies. Let us help you create brand recognition for your business, products and services. Call us at 407-998-1100.