Company Branding has always been one of the most important aspects of growing a business, and it may be more important now than ever.
Every day, consumers have exposed to new brands thanks to the use of social media, which generates a significant amount of competition for businesses. Businesses must invest in company branding to control how consumers perceive their company and differentiate themselves from their competitors to stand out.
Even though company branding is one of the most important aspects of growing a business, many people still get confused or uncertain about its true meaning. Let us dive deeper into understanding the meaning of company branding and its significance on businesses.
According to the Cambridge Dictionary, the term "branding" is the act of assigning a specific design or symbol to a company to advertise its products and services. This definition accurately describes the traditional understanding of company branding.
The traditional version of company branding focuses on the visual identity, which includes the logo, the design, and the development of a tagline or a brand promise. However, none of this helps differentiate a business from the other. Without a well-thought-out and consistent company branding and visual design, your product will lack the targeting it needs to give your potential customers trust and confidence in your brand.
The more evolved understanding of company branding can be defined as the process of giving meaning to an organization by shaping consumers' perception of the brand through various activities.
Companies must be deliberate in communicating a particular message at each point of interaction a user may have with your company. By doing so, customers can capture the spirit and value of the brand and create a distinct identity in the minds of consumers. This enables companies to define what their brand is and is not. They also help consumers to quickly identify and experience their brand, giving them a reason to choose their products over competitors.
Marty Neumeier, an author and brand advisor from the United States, defines a brand as a person's gut feeling about a product, service, or company. Company branding is the act of influencing that gut feeling but focusing on the company rather than the products and services of the company. Here's a video of him outlining the idea.
After understanding the meaning of company branding, you may be questioning why a business should invest in it. Here are a few reasons why investing in company branding is important for your business and how it can have an impact on your business.
First of all, company branding is important to businesses as it helps them to develop trust with their consumers. When a consumer looks at a company in any industry, they expect to see the company's company branding to determine its credibility. Having a clear, professional-looking company branding will be perceived by customers as an established, respectable company and will foster an elusive trust factor with them and encourage them to try your services.
Consumers are less likely to develop trust with a business that lacks company branding since it has little to show for it, which may be a red flag for some consumers.
Company Branding can also be used to inform customers about what they can expect from your business. Combining the trust factor with unrivalled service and a smartly built social media presence will delight your customers and motivate them to return.
Company branding provides value not just outside of the organization, but also within it. When an individual works for a company that has a strong brand and genuinely believes in the brand, they will be more satisfied with their job and have a greater sense of pride in the work that they perform.
Working for a reputable and well-regarded brand also makes the employee's job more pleasurable and fulfilling. It is also important for Employees to be proud of and support what the company stands for, as they are the first point of contact for any brand.
Employees are essentially the brand's initial ambassadors of your company. When employees have a strong connection to the brand and believe in what the brand represents, they will express their opinions about the brand with customers with whom they engage and influence them to believe what the company stands for.
Besides that, branding is important to the business as it helps companies build brand loyalty. This is because businesses do not want customers who remember the brand but only use them once; they want customers who will continue to return to their business.
Businesses that use company branding effectively can develop a more compassionate side of their business that their customers can relate to them. Businesses can use it to tap into the emotions of their customers and build an emotional connection between them and the company's values.
Customers who can relate to the companies values will develop a relationship with the brand and eventually become loyal customers of the brand. This is because humans are emotional, and if they like the concept, they will be one step closer to making a purchase decision.
Last but not least, company branding may help businesses build a clear organizational strategy. Everyone in the organization must have the same vision and purpose to build a strong brand.
When employees believe in what the company is doing and why it is doing it, their passion will reflect on the customers. A well-defined brand strategy provides the company with structured and detailed brand guidelines that embody the brand's purpose, values, strategy.
This will assist the employee in having a better understanding of what the company is doing and why they are doing it. Employees will also understand how to properly translate and communicate the values of the company to its customers.
Branding is crucial in how organisations are seen, the types of clients they attract, the techniques they employ to generate business, and the way they gain status in their particular industries, from sporting products to coffee shops. Your company's branding is more than just a visual depiction.
Now that we understand the meaning and the importance of company branding. Managers should invest in it for their companies for the business to separate itself from its competitors and attract more customers. To give you a better idea of how to implement it in your company, here is an example of Nike and how their company branding has contributed to the success of their company.
Before diving in, we must first evaluate Nike's values and what it stands for. According to Nike's mission statement, they have been highly constant and devoted to their objective of "bringing inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the globe." They even emphasize their stance by stating that "if you have a body, you are an athlete." From their mission statement, we can see that the values of Nike are to empower and inspire people to pursue achievement.
The company branding and slogans of Nike are also consistent with its values and focus on empowerment, as seen by its iconic slogan "Just Do It," which motivates and empowers its consumers to be courageous and daring. Another example can be found in a 2012 advertising campaign.
In 2012, Nike launched its "Find Your Greatness” campaign. They showed their audiences that their products are for the everyday athlete.
Nike made sure to remind its customers that anyone can be an athlete in their way and that anyone can relate to the struggles that professional athletes have. Therefore, their products are designed for everyone to feel accomplished and strong.
Nike also provides everyone with the appropriate athletic products to assist them to achieve their personal goals. They provide products that are easily accessible to anyone. Nike demonstrates that its apparel can be worn by anybody, regardless of age, weight, or socioeconomic standing, by designing the apparel with a range of pricing, designs, and objectives. Nike's relatability and sense of belonging helped to develop a strong brand image for its products.
From the examples above, we can see how Nike was able to transfer that message of empowerment and interact with audiences at every point of contact the company had with the customers. First, by using the slogan "Just Do It" and encouraging them to be more courageous and daring.
Second, by producing sports apparel that is accessible and suitable to everybody and encouraging them to be everyday athletes. This allows them to shape customers' perceptions of Nike as a brand that empowers and inspires them, which will help Nike to distinguish itself and stand out from other sports brands.
Another example of a company with good company branding is Apple. Apple's brand philosophy has always been to think differently. They want to motivate and inspire customers to do things uniquely and innovatively. Their company branding is aligned with their brand philosophy, this can be seen in their "think different" campaign.
In the ad, Apple not only delivered a message that supported innovation and creativity, but it also acted differently by creating products that look and work differently. From colourful iMacs to iPods, iPhones, and iPads, Apple has constantly defied expectations by inventing products that look and operate differently and is always asking the question of "what's different about this?".
By creating innovative products, Apple wants to show you that not only do they “think different”, but they also want to encourage their consumers to "think differently". This allows them to shape customers' perceptions of Apple as an innovative brand and a brand that inspires its customers to be innovative, enabling them to differentiate themselves and stand out from other phone brands.
The last example of a company with successful company branding is Coca-Cola. Looking at the mission statement of Coca-Cola, one of its mission statements is to inspire moments of optimism and happiness. Their company branding is aligned with their brand philosophy, this can be seen in their "open happiness" campaign.
Coca-Cola wants to show in the ad that even in today's stressful environment, there are still moments to enjoy life's basic pleasures, and Coca-Cola is always ready to deliver that little moment of fun and refreshment when required. This Coca-Cola to be able to shape the perception of itself as a brand that inspires happiness and optimism in people's lives.
To summarize, company branding is becoming increasingly crucial because customers are exposed to new businesses regularly through social media.
Company branding is more than just visual identity; it is about constantly communicating a particular message at every point of interaction a user may have with your brand and changing their perception of your business
This allows the company to shape customers' perceptions of their brands while also clarifying to the customer what the company offers that differentiates the company from its competition.
Therefore, investing and implementing company branding in your company can assist your company in differentiating itself and standing out from the rest of the competition.
"Brands are essentially patterns of familiarity, meaning, fondness, and reassurance that exist in the minds of people."Tom Goodwin