If you were offered a proven method to increase the sales and profitability of your business, but adopting it would require changes to some of your business practices, would you turn it away and keep plodding along? Creating a brand identity for your business or organization or for the products and services it offers has been proven to be the most powerful communications tool you can possess, but too many organizations resist making the commitment to branding.
Overcoming resistance to branding
Implementation of an effective brand strategy can propel your company or organization to the forefront of its market, but the reality is that few organizations actually take the time or make the effort to plan and execute a strategy designed to establish a brand identity. Sadly, your business could have a brand identity thrust upon it by competitors whose marketing and advertising campaigns create an unfavorable impression of your company or of its products and services.
So, the benefits of branding seem obvious, but why is there a resistance to taking the initiative and creating a brand that communicates a positive message about your company to consumers? There are many reasons, but a few of the more common ones include:
- Branding is only for corporate giants, such as Apple, General Electric and Coca Cola, and not for small- or medium-sized businesses
- Branding is a complex process that will consumer huge amounts of time and money
- Branding requires technical and creative skills that most cannot easily access
- Branding takes a long time to develop
- Branding requires a knowledge of social media and marketing that most companies do not possess
Branding is not a do-it-yourself project. We have the technical, creative and trademark expertise to take any company or organization from the planning stages through implementation of a successful branding strategy and campaign. For example, the process for brand name selection and acquisition removes the barriers that companies and organizations are concerned about and that keep them from launching a brand strategy of their own.
Another reason for the reluctance of many organizations to embrace branding appears to be a lack of understanding of the role it plays in building customer loyalty and reinforcing the image people have of your company or its products. For example, Nike has gone to great lengths to associate its name with world-class athletes in order to create an image of championships and excellence in the minds of its target audience of potential consumers of its products.
You want your brand to be memorable, and you want it to arouse positive images and associations about it in people’s minds. Brand recognition increases sales, but it can also permit you to capitalize on the image your brand projects. Automakers have used branding to distinguish the vehicles they produce from those of their competitors.
When people hear or read the name “Cadillac,” they associate it with a luxury, high-end vehicle driven by an executive or a formally attired couple heading out for an evening in the city. The image most people associate with Ford or Chevrolet is that of a functional vehicle transporting a family to their child’s soccer game.
Branding allows you to control the perception people have of your company and of the products and services it offers. Instead of consumer recognition being controlled by your competitors, branding allows you to develop and create a favorable and memorable image that remains within your control.
Brand identity does not happen by accident
Branding is more than simply a name associated with a product or business. Building brand identity begins with a branding strategy or plan that leads to acquisition of a name consistent with your brand objectives. We help you acquire a brand name that creates a favorable initial first impression that remains with the consumer. Other elements essential to effective branding include:
- A brief positioning statement: This gives people an instant summary of the products and services offered by your company and how they are better than what is offered by your competitors.
- Category descriptor: This tells consumers where in their minds to store your brand for future reference. For example, luxury and comfort are probably the category descriptors people associate with the Cadillac brand which benefits the car maker when people shop for a new vehicle.
- Your company’s values: Volvo has become synonymous with safety primarily because of its marketing and advertising campaigns over the years that have focused on the safety features of its vehicles. By branding itself as a safety-conscious company, Volvo has imparted its organization’s values to the products it sells.
- Brand personality: Branding can establish a personality or image that consumers associate with a company or with its products or services. Allstate and State Farm are two insurance giants that people associate with security and protection when disaster strikes. They did this largely through a branding strategy based upon company slogans. The “good hands people” of Allstate and the “neighborly” folks of State Farm have different slogans, but each of them conveys a sense of comfort and reassurance to consumers.
The key to creation of brand knowledge or identity is to create and implement a branding strategy that is consistent with the image you want people to have of you. At CreatingBrands.com, we provide all of the branding solutions to take your brand from the concept phase through to implementation.