It is a fair question. Why is branding important? Every business, at some point, has sat down and considered the image of the company they want to project. The use of a logo, colours, even the font of any text, can communicate so much about your values and your approach.
Such business branding has been around for hundreds of years. The engravings on pottery in ancient civilisations is a form of medieval watermarking that distinguish their work from that of other craftsmen. If something so simple has survived through time, evolving little from the first stamp of a skilled artisan, then it must be essential to the consumer. Here we explore why.
The importance of recognition
The first and most crucial reason to brand your company is to be recognised at a glance. You need to be spotted by your potential customers as they pass on the street or scroll through on the internet. The better the business branding, the more instant the recognition. The use of colour is an essential part of this recognition. You merely need to consider the significant supermarkets: Sainsbury’s (orange) Tesco (blue) Asda (green) and Morrisons (yellow).
Spotted on the shelf
The combination of colour, logo, packaging, and any communications tells a consistent story to your customers and help you to stand out amongst your competition. Even if you are not the manufacturer of a product sold at the local store, just imagine if it was. All your competition is stacked along a 10-metre length of shelf, 5 shelves high, and you are in the middle there somewhere. How on earth do you expect your desired customers to see you amongst that melee of colour and image?
A brand is like a road sign on the motorway. The symbols and language must pop out because your consumer is passing at 70mph. If your brand is known, then your packaging will be dominant because our brains lean towards familiarity. We lean towards choices based on recognition.
A route to customer and employee loyalty
With the dominance of the internet, creating a lifelong relationship with your customer is the most challenging pursuit and yet vital to consistent profits and secured growth. Your brand should be about trust. When your logo is seen, then your committed customer will know what they are going to get, and that they will get it promptly.
To attain this customer loyalty, your brand needs to have a clear understanding of its values. You should be sure that these values are the ones that are likely to be shared with your customer base.
However, the branding of your company works beyond marketing and talks directly to your employees too. Your brand can be something that your team of workers stands by and for. If you sell the brand to your employees, they will stick around longer – and they will communicate it more clearly to your customers.
The only way to grow
A brand is the means of establishing a consistent and loyal customer base. Upon this foundation, you can make bold choices that will allow your organisation to grow.
To ensure this growth, your brand should evolve with the times and the marketplace. If you look at cars, the luxury or high-end market became crowded, and not all vehicles could survive in this field. Therefore, some took the option to change their business branding to be accessible to that middle demographic who aspire to speed and luxury. Look at the way Audi has sought to reposition the company from high-end corporate to budding professionals with a moderate income.
Such adaptation of the brand is essential to the continued growth of a successful brand. Although history and loyalty are an integral part of a brand, so is an understanding that the customer and the marketplace evolve.
When you sit down to create your brand, you should begin with your values. You can start with the customer you hope to attract, but, in reality, your brand will only be authentic if it genuinely comes from your values. This authenticity is how trust is created because all the messages from your company will agree with this outward message you are projecting.