Branding is one of those things that many business owners believe they have a handle on. Sure, you may have a logo and consistent color palette throughout your business, but a brand and branding are much more than just a cool look. In fact, they are actually two different things. Your brand coexists with your branding, and in order to successfully convey what your business does, those two must complement one another. We meet with many businesses whose branding and brand are at odds. When we put together a Branding DNA Architecture it is our goal to bring these two extremely important aspects of business together to help these clients achieve their goals and begin to dream bigger.
While discussing the difference between a brand and branding in the office today, we were compelled to break this down. Lets dive into what makes these two seemingly identical marketing practices both different and critical to every marketing strategy, leading to the success of our clients.
Deconstructing a Brand
Brands are much more than the graphics and colors that come together to form your logo. They stand for much more. A brand is what your clientele and the community-at-large thinks about your business or company. This includes the perceptions that your employees and major stakeholders hold as well. A great logo and graphic package provide an accurate and instant gut-feeling about what a company is all about. It can take quite some time for this decisive piece of art to speak to you and accurately represent what you wish your brand to be. This is why world-class logos are so important, and essential to our approach in creating a DNA Architecture for our clients. Taking the time to understand what a business owner wishes their audience, employees, and stakeholders to feel about their business will result in a brand that is compelling, true, and fundamentally marketable.
Ultimately it’s not you who is in charge of your brand. How your brand makes others feel – both internally and externally – is what guides it through the competitive landscape.
A brand determines how others perceive your business, but branding is what you do give that brand a formidable foundation. Branding is how you interact with your customers, the care you put into your products and services, and the way in which you conduct business in your community. Consistent branding is tantamount to success because it influences your brand and can either dismantle your standing in your community or build you up and enable you to achieve your goals.
A Branding DNA Architecture
When we developed our process for creating and delivering Branding DNA Architectures for our clients, we weighed the name very carefully. While one of the goals of a DNA is to create a great brand for businesses in need, our ultimate goal is to help form a basis of consistent and authentic branding. We aim to help our clients discover what their goals are and what actions you have taken to either uphold your brand or undermine it. First, we outline what you wish your brand – or community perception – to be. Then, we help you determine what types of actions, through marketing, customer service, product development, and outreach is necessary to align the two.
A Branding DNA Architecture is a tool we have created that can help businesses understand who they are and what they want that. The process outlines a reasonable and tangible plan for fusing a carefully thought out brand with meticulously executed branding. The result is a successful marketing strategy that allows the business to achieve their goals, both short term and long term.
Next time you think about your brand, don’t think about your logo. Think about what your logo means. And next time you think about branding, don’t think about water bottles, pens, and t-shirts. Think about what you’re doing to enable your brand to elevate your business and allow you to achieve your goals.