What do you think of whenever someone mentions McDonald’s? If you think of a Big Mac, world famous fries, and/or golden arches, McDonald’s has successfully molded your perceptions of the quick service restaurant chain.
In other words, McDonald’s has successfully mastered business branding.
According to businessdictionary.com, business branding involves the process of “creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumers’ mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers.”
Kind of a dry explanation, isn’t it?
Hundreds, if not thousands of definitions fly through cyberspace that define branding, or in old school parlance, brand. A more casual definition and perhaps the one that best defines the meaning of branding comes from brand strategy agency, Tronvig Group. A brand is “what sticks in your mind associated with a product, service, or organization — whether or not, at that particular moment, you bought or did not buy.”
Business branding is all about making an indelible impression.
Think about what pops into your brain, whenever you think about iconic brands such as Starbucks and Coca Cola. In the case of world renowned Coke, the brand closely associates with the memorable curvy white on red scripted logo. You don’t need to see the words “Coca Cola” to recognize the brand.
The logo more than makes a permanent impression on you. Starbucks has achieved similar branding success with its creative logo, which invokes the five senses to ponder a delicious and energy boosting cup of a café au lait (Starbucks has created a memorable name for this classic French cup of java).
Successful business branding doesn’t solely rely on creating a memorable logo. Packaging, customer service, and unique products also play significant roles in establishing a brand. It doesn’t matter how your company establishes a brand; it matters that you establish your brand. Successful small businesses develop unique strategies that have the most impact on sales. They create permanent identities for their small business.
Business branding prompts associations with your small business. However, the associations must always be positive. You attract customers to your small business because of one or more associations that ensure a positive shopping experience.
McDonald’s could simply display the iconic golden arches logo in a 10-second commercial and effectively deliver its brand message of piping hot food served in a timely manner.
Business branding is all about creating positive associations.
Business branding plays an important role in customer recommendations. Word of mouth advertising still represents the most cost effective way of marketing your business. By establishing your business brand, customers have a much easier time recommending your small business to friends, family members, and professional peers.
Your brand image represents the most important asset that you own. It’s just that you can’t place a dollar amount on successful business branding. If you want to increase sales, you must implement branding strategies that leave a long lasting impression on new and repeat customers.
This post is an excerpt from “Business Branding: Expert Marketing Techniques For Building A Captivating Brand, Attracting Customers and Reinventing Your Image In The Digital Age,” which is available on Amazon here.