In this age of fast and easy information, the world is at people’s fingertips. With so many marketing messages bombarding us everyday, we tune out everything that doesn’t directly appeal to us. It is very important to stand out in the crowd in this competitive age. An effective branding can cut through that clutter and grab our attention. When that brand promises us the experience we’re looking for, we take notice. Good brand marketing can attract new business, residents and visitors, helping to diversify economy and enhance the quality of day-to-day life.
Now is the age of specialization - being known for something specific. The process of branding sets you apart from your competitors; it is people’s perception when they think of your brand.
Here are the things you need to know about branding:
Logos and slogans are NOT brands. Your brand is what people think of you or their perceptions about your company. It is what people expect they will see and experience when they buy your product or service - good and bad. Logos, slogans, graphics and advertisements are just marketing messages used to support and promote the brand.
A brand makes a promise, and that promise is built on product. Therefore it is important that you must have the activities, amenities and ambiance that fulfill or deliver your brand promise. You have to BE what you say you are.
You never just “roll-out” a brand. Brand is earned and built over time. Since a brand makes a promise, it’s essential that the promise is fully realized, practical, and pervasive. What you promise you need to deliver that no matter what because that will create a trust for your brand. There will be times when the business will need to focus on repositioning or rebranding it in order to change the perception of the consumers, which can be an arduous and time-consuming process.
Public relations help to build a strong brand and are one of the important brand marketing tools; advertising is used to maintain your position, once you own the brand. Remember, brands are perceptions - what people think of you and advertising is what you think of yourself. Therefore you need to bridge the gap that a third-party endorsement that effectively provide. Start with the web - blogs, YouTube, reviews, etc.
Your brand MUST be experiential or activity-driven, not just based on something to look at or a warm and fuzzy feeling. These days, people are looking for experiences, things to do activities. Static attractions where there are simply things are boring and do not work anymore. You have to be flexible enough to follow the trend and be updated.
Remember your brand is what sets you apart from your competitors. When someone mentions your company’s name, what is the first thing that comes to mind and to what they associate your brand to? The name must become synonymous with the brand.
Ø You must confine your brand marketing to your target market. Make sure you know your customer well and the message you are sending is effective enough. The more you dilute your message, the harder it will be to remember and less important it will sound.
It takes a village to build and own a brand - everyone working in the organization must be on the same page and pulling in the same direction, be it the external environment or the internal factors. You really need to work hard and smart to get things in favor of your brand.