What are the benefits of a brand?
Branding a term that’s newly defined in terms of modern communications, and has become an essential element in generating revenues and building long-term customer loyalty.
It’s easy to understand branding, but it can be complicated to get it right. Your brand is simply the combination of all the things that make you memorable. While your logo is an important part of your brand, brands are more than a logo— it’s a reflection of the unique differentiators that set you apart in the marketplace. In short, it’s what makes you who you are. When customers can emotionally identify with your product, service, or cause they believe in your brand purpose, promise, and principles.
Having a strong brand is an essential foundation of successful marketing. How you do it can make or break your business. If your business is growing (or needs to be) branding can help. Learn more about our work with industries ranging from real estate to automotive, non-profits to manufacturing.
Here are 7 benefits exceptional branding will bring to your business.
1. Drive EMOTIONAL Connection
Brands influence how people perceive your company, products, and services – the forge is a connection. When a consumer feels connected to your brand, it’s actually an emotional connection. For instance, Nike promotes determination and drive with “Just Do It.” Athletic, goal-driven people connect to the idea of working out, sweating, and being brave – no matter what.
Jeep and Harley Davidson attract consumers seeking outdoor adventure, and a sense of freedom, and exploration. These brands don’t always reflect what many of their customers actually do. Instead, they provide a promise of what they aspire to do.
And there are hundreds of examples of powerful brands that create an emotional connection with consumers, from big companies to not-so-big, like Virgin, Netflix, Disney, Tesla, Peloton, and more. The key is a strategic understanding of the specific emotional reaction desired. In many ways, branding is focused on emotional engineering.
Developing enduring emotional connections with your fans is not only the purview of big brands. With the right strategy and carefully crafted messaging, a relevant, meaningful brand can be built for any sized company.
“With the right strategy and carefully crafted messaging, a relevant, meaningful brand can be built for any sized company.”
2. Build VALUE
One of the most enduring benefits of an exceptional company brand is the value it can add to your business – not only monetarily, but how much people want to invest long term.
Consumers want to be loyal to brands – it lowers their purchase risk. Consistent, relevant, valuable branding helps build that loyalty. In psychology this is referred to as social proof – people tend to trust businesses others trust.
Branded products are perceived as more valuable than generic offerings. It’s the result of supply and demand evaluation. Commodity offerings compete on lower prices, which influences consumer perception as lower value. But branded products drive higher prices, which tends to result in increased perception of value by customers.
3. Drive REVENUE
One of the most desired benefits of a brand is its impact on revenues. Branding helps qualify customers more quickly, helping to improve marketing efforts by attracting the right people who are likely to become customers. This in turn has a tremendous impact on sales, who spend more time helping prospects who are already ready to buy.
In real estate development, this could happen throughout the financing process from attracting partners or investors, to financing, all the way through to leasing and sales.
Your brand can effectively influence each stage of the process by presenting an emotional message, followed by all the features of the offering. As the old adage in marketing goes “people buy on emotion and justify with logic.”
“People buy on emotion and justify with logic.”
4. Add EQUITY on the Balance Sheet
For many companies, the asset value of the brand can eclipse the book value of all their assets. Consider the market value of brands like: Coke, Apple, Tesla, or Chanel.
What are you doing to develop your brand? The simple measurement is an annual budget assigned for its care. If you’re relying on a graphic designer to steward your brand, it’s like relying on a plumber to manage a drywall project. Both are construction-oriented, but a specialist gets the job done with the least risk.
Branding is a way to add an asset to the balance sheet. What was once referred to as “goodwill” has been effectively replaced by brand equity. Branding is an investment that returns dividends over many years, and should be capitalized like any durable asset. But many people make the mistake of looking at ROI in terms of profit and loss. P&L measurement works best for marketing, where campaigns can be analyzed for direct results. Branding requires balance sheet thinking to properly understand it’s true potential.
“If you’re relying on a graphic designer to steward your brand, it’s like relying on a plumber to manage a drywall project.”
5. Encourage Customer LOYALTY
Every company wants their investment in marketing to pay dividends, even after the marketing spend is over. That’s where the benefits of a brand comes in.
In real estate branding, for example, businesses that choose branded developments are more likely to invest in higher quality build-outs, which in turn drives higher perceived value, resulting in more traffic and demand. Seasonal displays, captivating windows, and event promotions all flow from this. Successful branding also builds affinity for the developer’s new projects, creating instant appeal for future properties in the pipeline.
As consumers become more aware of the impact of their purchase decisions, values-driven brand approaches have become more viable and exceptional.
6. Reinforce COMPANY VALUES
An opportunity with any brand is to incorporate corporate values into the message your consumer market receives. But it also establishes the culture that your employees will adopt. Brands that become emblematic of the authentic values that you truly embrace can become iconic with your team members.
At Flux, we like to say that great brands take stands. It means that strong brands are unapologetic about what they believe are recognize that appealing to a niche is often more powerful than trying to please everyone.
An exceptional brand should answer questions, like:
- What kind of world do you want to create?
- What promises will we never compromise?
- What is our personality and brand archetype?
Like a corporate flag, your brand is the symbolic representation of everything you believe, value, and promise.
7. Ensure CONSISTENCY
In psychology, the principle of consistency is expressed in consumers’ desire to be consistent with what they have already said or done. For example, if you purchased an Apple product once you are likely to have an unconscious desire to be consistent with previous actions, making you the perfect target for their next product or for upgrading your existing one.
The same principle can be at work in your company. Brands can promote repeat purchases and referral business. Both the brand is consistent in design and delivery and end-users desire to be consistent in their buying behavior.
The branding process results in documents that help creatives maintain consistency without restrictions. The brand platform, brand messaging toolkit, and brand standards manual are extremely important documents that can be distributed to marketers, designers, and salespeople to teach them how the brand works.
One more thing:
This article has focussed largely on brand awareness driving market expansion and the bottom line. And then there is your team. One of the unexpected benefits of an exceptional brand is how it can connect people to their jobs.
Employees at Google (despite a few hiccups) are attracted to the company’s “Do the right thing” brand value. Just as employees and recruits alike are attracted to other exceptional brands, like Patagonia, Shopify, Slack, and Lululemon.
Ultimately, people are the key to your business success. Exceptional branding can reach the hearts and souls of your employees, encouraging loyalty and a passion for the work they do every day.
Craft or Refine Your Brand for Optimal Results
At Flux, we’ve developed a framework that will examine, analyze, and define your brand. Applying this framework informs the creative process, helping us craft messaging, artwork, programs, and experiences that resonate with your market.
We bring our clients on a journey of better branding by using our four-step methodology, the IDEA Method, which stands for:
Our methodology combines creativity with analytics and practical systems to help you understand your brand and ignite the world with your message.
Contact us today to get started.
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Reference: Robert Cialdini’s groundbreaking work on the 6 persuasion principles is covered in his books Influence and Pre-suasion.