Most people are very clear what a business is. They understand that it is the organisation that provides services or products to their target audience. When it comes to branding however, it appears that this topic is a little more shrouded in mystic, myths and misunderstanding, writes Debbie O’Connor.
Business versus branding
The reason is that most people believe that their logo is their brand. The myth is that once you have a logo and you slap it on everything, you are branding your business. This is very far from the truth and reality of branding. Yes, the logo is part of the brand. It is one of the critical visual elements of your brand identity but it is not THE brand.
People identify with a brand not a logo
After all, Apples don’t sell computers. It is the brand that people buy into, not the logo. Apple sells computers because their brand is forward-thinking, innovative and progressive with beautifully designed products that sync your entire life. Customers buy Apple products to align themselves with this brand and to be associated with all of their brand attributes. The apple simply tells us where to buy the products and who owns them.
The simplest way to explain the difference between a business and a brand is that businesses are about transactions. If you are transacting with someone, you are doing business. A child on the side of the road is doing business. Branding, however, is about connection and reputation. If you are truly connecting and resonating with your customer and if you are delivering what you say you will, you will build a great reputation. This is branding.
Branding is about connection
During Covid-19 we have seen many businesses go out of business. Why? In my opinion, it is because they have been so focused on building a business. They have been more concerned about the number of transactions that they make and less about the connections. When Covid-19 came along and removed the ability for many businesses to transact, their business disappeared at the same time. However, those that had focused on building a brand have been able to weather the storm far better. This is because their focus has been on people over profit, on connection rather than cash and reputation rather than results. Yes, they too have taken a hit, but their ability to resonate and impact their customers means that when it does come time to purchase, their customers will choose them over their competitors.
My question to you is, have you been focused on building a business or building a brand? If you focus on branding, your business will automatically flourish.
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