Branding can be worth its weight in gold. Converse. Google. All of these companies have well-established images that they present to their consumers. Converse appeals to trendy and young adults who aren’t bothered by the lack of arch support. Google is known as the vanguard of the Internet. It protects the integrity of online information and provides people with the best possible results. Because of these well-established brands, they get customers because of brand loyalty.
What is branding? Branding, according to the American Marketing Association, can be defined as the characteristics (name, term, design, or symbol) that enable a company to form a distinct identity from its competitors. There are two different types of branding you should be concerned with: company branding and employer branding.
- Company branding targeted at all potential consumers. Consumers always form an opinion about your company. Every ad, every gossip, every product they use and every customer review they stumble upon. Branding is a way to channel those opinions in the “right” direction. By not actively building a brand, you allow the public to form an opinion without any involvement. This could have disastrous consequences.
- Employer brand targeted at employers and potential employees. The idea is to invest your employees in the value of the company and to attract highly skilled workers. Employer brand supported three main pillars: communicating the brand identity to employees, convincing them of the value of brands and associating each work with the essence of the brand being created.
Is branding really effective? Recent article in New Yorker James Surowijki argues that branding is no longer an effective marketing technique. Surowijki rightly points out that “consumers are eminently well-informed” and more likely to “explore the real value of products.” According to him, branding logos are no longer so dependent on decision making. He uses the well-respected brand Lululemon Athletica, which received backlash from the public when it released poorly made yoga pants. I believe that this is not a reflection of the decline of branding, but rather the result of the company’s failure to maintain its brand image.
Creation and implementation Building a brand is a complex process. There are tactics you can use, but it is important for you to understand that branding is not only a science, but also an art. The rest of this article should guide you through the process.
The first step of your company branding The campaign should be to establish the mission of your company. Without a mission statement, your campaign will lack the guidance needed for effective branding. Determine the values, goals, and what you consider your company’s value to consumers. After that, here are a few tactics you can use.
- Social media profiles. This serves two purposes. It is a method of direct interaction and observation of your consumers. *Remember, talk to your employers, not them.
- Company mascot. Mascots communicate your values to consumers without directly stating them. What’s more, they can be a fun way for your company to interact with your company. They can be funny characters that can be used to create a connection with consumers. online via mascot twitter pages or websites.
- Blogs. Company blogs are a great way to engage consumers and keep them coming back. They demonstrate that you are ready to serve a larger community purpose than selling a product. Don’t stick to traditional articles. Immerse yourself in infographics and videos. Both can spread across the Internet like wildfire.
Once you have started creating company branding, you should start working on employee branding. Google is by far the most effective example of employee branding. Their company has such a solid reputation among employers that they were featured in a 2013 movie. Internship. Here are some tips to be as successful as Google.
- Employee expectations. You need to make sure that employees understand how they need to act in order to maintain the image of the company you are trying to achieve. Ideally, this should provide some small amount of expectation for keeping social media profiles clean.
- Bonuses for employees. Expecting employees to behave in certain ways after work can seem like too much, so you should try to provide employee benefits. While you may not be able to compete with the benefits Google gives out to its employees, you must provide employees with basic benefits (sick days and vacation days at work).
- Means of communication. Allow employees to send you feedback about the work environment.
- Relaxing work environment. Wall mural to order with a company logo can create an interesting environment that highlights your brand’s personality. Pictures on the wall can get your workers creative. In the fully equipped break room, your employees can relax and socialize.
A brand can be the difference between a good company and a great company. Just remember that branding won’t be successful if you don’t live up to your end of the bargain. Your company and employees must live by the values. This means providing quality services and products. Now go ahead and start building your brand.
Chris Garrett spent his youth helping his grandfather at his restaurant. He makes killer omelettes.