Branding and brand come before marketing and communication efforts. They are bigger than both or either of them and are continuously shaped by being out there. So ultimately, brands are built by what companies decide they are, but they are also built by the messages that are spread about them by the companies they belong to and the consumers they interact with every day.
Jeff Bezos from Amazon says that your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room. There are certain truth to this. No matter how hard we tried to build brands and we will be learning a lot about these in the next sessions, brands behave a little bit as people.
There is a very rational side to them, but they are also incredibly emotional and the way they relate to people is purely emotional and intangible. Some people go as far as stating that a brand refers to all these collection of gut feelings that you have about an organization. The gut reaction when you think about a product or company and its services.
Building brand starts by recognizing four key pillars that explain a brand and its contribution to business performance. These four pillars are:
Differentiation is the degree to which a brand stands out from its competitors and offers something unique or superior. It is the answer to the question: why should customers choose you over others? Differentiation can be based on various factors, such as product features, quality, price, service, innovation, design, etc. Differentiation helps a brand create a distinctive identity and position in the market. It also helps a brand attract and retain customers who value its uniqueness or superiority.
Relevance is the degree to which a brand meets the needs and expectations of its target customers. It is the answer to the question: how well do you fit with your customers’ preferences and lifestyles? Relevance can be based on various factors, such as benefits, values, emotions, culture, trends, etc. Relevance helps a brand create a strong connection and relationship with its customers. It also helps a brand increase its customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Esteem is the degree to which a brand is respected and admired by its customers and stakeholders. It is the answer to the question: how well do you deliver on your promises and reputation? Esteem can be based on various factors, such as performance, quality, reliability, consistency, trustworthiness, etc. Esteem helps a brand create a positive image and perception in the market. It also helps a brand enhance its word-of-mouth and referrals.
Knowledge is the degree to which a brand is recognized and understood by its customers and stakeholders. It is the answer to the question: how well do you communicate who you are and what you do? Knowledge can be based on various factors, such as awareness, familiarity, recall, associations, etc. Knowledge helps a brand create a memorable and distinctive impression in the market. It also helps a brand increase its visibility and accessibility.
Building a strong and consistent brand requires defining and aligning these four pillars: differentiation, relevance, esteem, and knowledge. These four pillars form the basis of your brand strategy and value proposition. They help you communicate your brand’s purpose, promise, values, and voice to your customers and stakeholders. They help you create a competitive advantage and a loyal following in the market.
If you need help with creating or improving your brand strategy, contact us today at eljaymedia.com. We are branding and digital marketing agency that can help you with everything from logo design to website development. We can help you create a brand that reflects your vision, mission, values, and voice. We can help you create a brand that stands out from the crowd.