As the business world keeps on advancing year after year, so does the manner in which companies need to market themselves to stand out among the present competition.
A company is merely a company without a strong brand. You wouldn’t sustain for long in this era unless you build a powerful image for your company in the marketplace.
Economic and technological development will continue to level up the competition in the market, it will become increasingly difficult and risky to depend on products and services only for a profitable business.
That’s when branding comes in. To stand out in the market, businesses need to build a strong brand.
Branding is a combination of the features that define a business – along with a catchy name, attractive logo, and color schemes there is a lot more that plays a major role while building a strong brand for your company.
The story that you have written for your brand, the language that is used for different social media platforms – even your captions matter, the product packaging, tone of the brand, website, and the list goes on. Every aspect plays a role in building a strong brand.
Customers today don’t just purchase a product, they expect an experience. Conducting surveys is an old school practice now to find out what your target audience wants. Companies today involve the customer in their product developments.
This is a smart move of demonstration of letting them join your inventive procedure to engage them.
Moreover, this methodology makes you look progressively dependable, trustworthy and authentic.
There’s a difference between Branding and Marketing
Have you at any point pondered the contrast between branding and marketing? Yes everyone does, but you are not alone with this confusion. While the two are without a doubt associated, there are minute differences between the two.
As an entrepreneur, it is essential that you understand branding and marketing both in extraordinary detail, with the goal that you can successfully use them together. The following is a more critical gander at the contrasts among branding and marketing.
Branding is the strategy you follow to meet your marketing goals.
Marketing is the process or the tools and ways a company uses to deliver the message of their brand.
Branding defines who you are and what your company is about. While marketing is the process of creating awareness about your brand and increasing credibility in the competitive marketplace.
Marketing is the practice of getting people engaged with your business and branding is something that keeps them coming back to you.
Effective branding makes marketing easier for your company. Moreover, branding cannot stand alone. Branding without marketing doesn’t work for any business.
Latest Branding trends of 2020
1. Create your story
How, when and why did this company start?
Your audience wants to know your story. A story with facts, not fiction.
Branding is not just about the logo of your company or the products and services you offer with great packaging. Storytelling is a part of branding. Invest some time in learning how to share your story. About the adventurous lifestyle, adversity your company has faced and aim in creating human connection by adding some emotional touch.
2. Be Bold!
Be bold while building brand guidelines or a strategy for your company. Take the risk with your image. People will remember the brands that stand out in the market for their boldness. It stays in their mind for a long time. This can be executed by using strong language, powerful artwork, or even bold colors. Break the norms and don’t be afraid to take a chance.
Take the example of The Rolling Stone – An American monthly magazine about popular culture. This Brand is known well for the strong language they use and powerful artwork.
3. Brand Influencer
Have you ever followed a brand or made a purchase because a well-known personality you admire has endorsed a product or service of that brand?
Oh yes! I did. I started following Manyavar when Virat Kohli became the brand ambassador.
Influencer marketing is no longer a newbie in this era. Every other brand uses influencers to reach out to a greater audience. It is one of the best practices to increase your followers, gain popularity and boost your sales.
Influencer Marketing is a form of word-of-mouth marketing. People tend to get influenced while making a decision for their purchase when someone else refers to them about it.
A well-known influencer can help you increase your brand awareness, traffic, boost sales and engagement by leveraging their social media power.
4. Immersive Technology
The impact of technology on branding is changing the market like never before. Companies now focus on giving a human-like experience to their customers with the help of Artificial Intelligence.
Artificial Intelligence analyses consumer behavior and provides businesses with insights into their competitors, current performance, and resource allocation. Marketers can leverage these insights to create a better connection with their audience in the future and improve their performance.
Chatbots are the most commonly used AI platform by companies today. The introduction of chatbots has improved customer engagement. People can chat in real-time with 24*7 customer support.
5. Creative Customer Experiences
Customers start expecting more from you when your brand stands out from the rest. Branding is not just about selling, logo, and image. Creating an experience for the customers is a major role for your company. You can deliver the expected experience only if you understand the needs and behavior of your customers.
Though your products may be great, your profits won’t last unless you nail your customer service. And this will let you stand different from your competitors.
Design the experience you want to give your customers by keeping in mind that they are your long term need. Give them a reason to come back.
Importance of Branding in Marketing
1. Stand Apart from your Competitors
The market out there is crowded. The competition for every company to stand out has reached the next level. Every business wants to present itself as a unique niche field. To beat your competitors, do everything that your competitors do and differentiate yourself at the same time, and fill up the void that they leave.
For example – Differentiate your brand in terms of pricing, by focusing on a narrow niche, innovation, convenience, and by delivering extraordinary services.
But sometimes take the chance and be quirky, weird, and bold. That’s what makes you different from your competitors.
People tend to connect better with brands that have a face. Show your audience YOU.
2. Products get recognized
When your audience has a good relationship with your brand it gets easier to promote products.
Branding helps your company to build up an image in the marketplace and in addition boost the sales. Your brand becomes recognizable once you bring it to your audience’s notice.
Moreover, arranging different occasions to announce the newly launched product can add a cherry to your cake. Advertising will lead the way. Different gadget companies like Apple, Microsoft, Adobe, and Oneplus have established themselves because of the outstanding branding.
Fundamentally, the more you bring your service in front of the crowd, the higher the odds of your service being known by the partners. There is a more prominent significance of brand recognition.
3. Generates Increased Revenue
A brand is a valuable asset. Branding is an investment for companies.
Apart from the sales of products and services you offer, people perceive your brand because of your brand equity. Let’s take the global brand Apple for example. They have great leveraging power and through effective branding, they have gained huge brand equity. They rule the market at this time. They have the power to increase the prices of their products three times and their audience will still pay for it.
Once your brand is positioned as a leader in the industry and marketplace, with great brand equity and customer loyalty, you will see a huge increase in market share.
4. Branding increases employee productivity
People are willing to work for you when your brand is well established. This frees your company up to the top ability and furnishes you with the most qualified and skillful workers for your organization. When you have the most ideally equipped individuals for the activity, your organization’s profitability level will also increase.
Your employees need to stay motivated to work efficiently. When the brand is well-known and has the potential to fulfill the employee’s requirement, it will result in the growth of the business.
5. Branding helps you connect with your customers emotionally
Creating strong emotions helps in building bonds between the customer and the business, which is definitely one of the best practices for building a brand. Brand intimacy results in the growth of the business to a great extent.
The best practices to build a strong connection with the customers are listed below:
- Try fulfilling the needs of your customers beyond their expectations.
- Help customers become better and smarter through your products and services. As mentioned earlier, give them a reason to come back.
- Give your customers a fun and gratifying experience. Get your customers to indulge with your brand.
- Create an identity and image for your brand that customers can resonate with, so they may feel connected with you.
- Keep your messages simple and clear. A message that makes sense and can be easily understood.
Always remember Branding is an action (verb). Empower your business with branding and in the process, if you feel lost, always get help from professional branding managements and get your business back to life.