• stefaniaureche26

Good branding vs bad branding

Branding is all we’re talking about these days in connection to starting a business. Why? Because it gives your business a major edge in increasingly competitive markets. It helps you stand out and win a place in the mind and hearts of your potential customers.

At one point, Marty Neumeier defined “brand” as follows:

A brand is a result; it’s a customer’s gut feeling about a product, service, or company.

He believes that the brand is not something static, created artificially, and meant to be in a certain way, but rather the representation that the audience makes up in their heads about the brand. This means that it can mean something different for each of them, depending on their personal experience with it.

Good branding

One of the most important qualities of a successful brand is consistency. This implies that you should be present in the life of your customers so that they can become familiar with your brand. Good brands are consistent with who they are, how they communicate to their audience, and how they present themselves.

Another essential aspect is uniqueness. What differentiates you from the rest? It doesn’t need to be anything fancy or revolutionary, but it definitely has to be memorable; it can be the logo (e.g., Apple), the slogan (e.g., Nike – “Just do it”, Carlsberg – “Probably the best beer in the world”, Coca Cola – “Taste the feeling”), or even the packaging (e.g., Pringles, Chanel No. 5, Amazon delivery box).

Storytelling is equally important. Human-to-human connections are the heart and soul of your business. In the end, you’re dealing with people, and storytelling is a powerful technique for building relationships. It’s important to build your business around a brand story because it helps generate a feeling of familiarity and trust.

Bad branding

Inconsistency is probably the worst thing you could do for your business. Misalignments in your communication diminish the impact of your marketing significantly. It’s like promising one thing and delivering something completely different. You need to have a clearly defined message and create standards that take into account all the ways your brand will be visually communicated in order to avoid confusing your customers.

Next, there’s the lack of personality. Having a remarkable personality is more about how you make people feel at the end of the day. Eccentric might inspire joy, but friendly and thoughtful might inspire peace, or strong and action-oriented might inspire confidence and a can-do attitude. What matters the most is not what you tell your customers, but how you make them feel.

Lastly, a no-strategy kind of approach is definitely not the way to go. When there’s no strategy in the game, your marketing, sales, human resources, and customer service might not align with one another, putting your business at risk. Draw up a brand strategy by answering questions like: How are the actions going to be taken? What is the feeling we want to be remembered for? What are the types of customers we seek to acquire?

The bottom line

Branding is the general feeling that potential customers get whenever they come across your products or services. How do you want them to be perceived? Keep in mind that branding doesn’t have to be overcomplicated, but if you take the time to build a strong foundation, it will significantly increase your business’ sales value.

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