Branding Guide: 5 Most Essential Elements of Business and Personal Branding  

Social media influencers have created a lot of buzz about business/ personal branding, especially in the last few years. In fact, they have convinced a large number of small businesses and individuals to rethink themselves. Why can’t we become a brand?

Of course, everyone can become a brand but branding is not just about posting a few posts on social networks. It takes a whole lot of process to become a brand that people recognize with a name, logo, or even a tagline.

Have you ever wondered why businesses and individuals invest a huge amount of time, money, and effort into building their “branding”? That’s all because a strong brand is going to pay back everything they invest into it.

What is a Brand?

According to investopedia, the term “brand” is basically a marketing concept that resides in customers’ minds helping them differentiate businesses, products, services, or individuals. Therefore, we imagine products, services and individuals with the level of quality, credibility, and trust they have delivered to us.

What do you imagine when you see the names like Nike, Gucci, Starbucks, or Dunkin’ Donuts? You think of quality, credibility, and trust because these brands have not disappointed their customers. They have been delivering what their customers expect from them. The term “branding” develops a fine image of a business organization or a single product or service.

The most significant objective of “brand building” is to stand out from the crowd of competitors and build your unique identity.  

Types of Branding

If you follow the “one-size-fits-all approach” in understanding the concept of branding, you are absolutely wrong. In fact, there are multiple types of branding and each one has some specifications. When you understand their specifications, it becomes easier for you to plan and execute brand-building strategies. Let’s discuss briefly some of the common types of branding.

1: Corporate branding

Let’s assume a company is an individual with multiple traits that represent him in front of other people. People know, remember and deal with him with his traits. If he has successfully developed a good image of him, they will remember him in good names. Corporate branding shares common traits of branding i.e values, missions, and promises

2: Retail branding

A customer walks into a physical store to buy an Espresso Coffee Machine where he sees a wide range of machines. He also notices the store’s overall theme such as furniture, fixtures, and light matches the specific brand. He is also impressed with the friendly behavior of the support staff at the store. An ideal retail branding provides every customer with a pleasant shopping experience.

3: Product and Service branding

Product and service branding is quite a challenging task because it directly deals with the customer’s practical experience. If their personal experience with the use of your products and services is good, they will remember you in good words.

4: Personal branding

The concept of personal branding came into the limelight when people started following social media influencers due to their personalities. If compared with products and services, it is even more challenging to strive for building a personal brand.

Three Phases of Branding

There are three essential phases of branding i.e strategy, recognition, and marketing.

1: Brand Strategy

Based on your objective and future goals, you have to create a strategic brand-building plan. You and your team will be following this plan to propagate your objectives, targets, and promises. The ultimate goal of this plan is to build a strong “brand”.

2: Brand Recognition 

Brand recognition is the process of spreading your objectives, targets and promises among followers and potential customers. During this process, you can use visuals, logos, colors, fonts, themes, designs, ads, and more to deliver your brand message.

3: Brand Marketing

When you move into the third phase, you use marketing tactics that are already mapped out in the strategy phase. These marketing tactics may include social media, search engine optimization, and advertisement to create awareness about your products or services.

Five Essential Elements of Branding

There are five essential elements that brush up the concept of branding. These elements represent what you promise to deliver to your customers. What they should expect from you and how you are going to maintain your legacy. These are as follow:

  • Official Name
  • Brand Logo
  • Promising Tagline
  • Brand Objective, Target And Efficacy
  • Customer Experience

1: Official Name

You must give an official name to your brand regardless of the type of business you run. If you are a blogger, give your blog a proper name so people can know and remember it. It may be anything i.e your own name or something referring to your business etc. When you choose a brand name, carefully follow the below-given tips:

  • Meaningful: The name should be meaningful and reflect the nature of your business. Additionally, it should create an emotional touch with the customers.
  • Distinctive: Try something distinctive that distinguishes you from your rivals i.e a simple and unique name that is easy to remember.
  • Rememberable: People should be able to remember it, refer to it, spell it or even look up its meaning.
  • Available: Before you select a name, make sure you can find the same domain/URL for your official website, blog and social media accounts. It is your trademark and you must protect it.
  • Capacity: It should have the capacity to broaden in future. For example, presently you have one product to sell but in future you might include more in your stock. Hence the name should have the capacity to add a variety of products and services.
  • Visual: Visually it should be appealing and can be translated easily into logos, icons and other designs.

2: Brand Logo

You need a brand logo to represent your business to create a picture of a range of services you offer. Once you are a brand, people know you with your logo, so make sure it is made once for all. To create an effective logo, you need good colors, mood, and image.

However, the most popular logos of most of the top brands are simple with no fancy elements. Simple logos may be used in multiple situations and therefore these are most preferred by top brands. Check out the logos of popular brands such as:

  • Mcdonald’s
  • Apple
  • Mercedes
  • Nike
  • Google
  • Twitter

These brands have very simple logos but all of them have left a deep impact on their customers and followers.

3: Promising Tagline

Do you really need a tagline for your brand? Well, a tagline comes as the third most memorable thing for customers. It helps improve your brand identity and recognition and tells what your brand is all about. All brands have some sort of tagline, but not each one of them leaves a great impact on customers’ minds.

Being consistent, concise, and clear is the key to developing a successful tagline. This unique element is essential not just for large companies or small businesses but for individuals as well.

A powerful tagline can help you convey your message to your customers and followers. It will tell them what your objective, target, and efficacy are. A great tagline is not necessarily complicated but a simple line of a few words can leave a powerful message.

Let’s check out some examples:

Nike: “Just Do It” – this tagline gives a powerful message to achieve your goals no matter how tough the road ahead is.

Apple: “Think Different” – break the barrier of tradition and go ahead of your limits and think something that others can’t think of.

KFC: “It’s finger lickin’ good” – Because you love the taste you would find the best taste ever here with us.

All of the above taglines are short and simple but convey a message to the readers.

4: Brand Objective, Target And Efficacy

To create awareness and build a strong brand, you have to use a combination of objective, target, and efficacy.

Your objective is your work and what you are trying to deliver to your valued customers and followers. Besides, you have got a target to achieve by serving customers. Your efficacy is something that you represent through your services. For instance, your business is to sell AI Chatbots:

  • Objective: your objective will be deliverance of an improved interactive experience to customers.
  • Target: Your target might be to assist small business owners improve their customer support.
  • Efficacy: Your efficacy might be deliverance of high quality interactive services at the most affordable prices.

5: Customer Experience

User experience is the source of letting your customers and followers connect, engage, and interact with your brand. Moreover, this could be done via website, blog, social media accounts, products, services, and customer support. Every step that comes in between the way from the first interaction to the final use of products is called customer experience.

A good user experience establishes a long-term relationship between your customers, followers, and your brand. This is the most significant point that helps you term yourself as a “brand”. Therefore, once you develop a high level of branding, your customers will return back to you without making lots of effort.

How Do You Tell Your Brand Story?

When you want to leave an unerasable image of you in customers’ and followers’ minds, you tell your brand story. “How you become a brand” should be the most impressive part of your story. You tell how far your destination was and how you speeded up the mileage.

Remember:  People love, listen and remember stories. When they remember your story, they will remember you as a “brand” as well. Once you learn the way to tell your story, you become a brand in your particular industry or niche.

So what do you need to cast your own story?

There are various important points that help you create a strong, impressive, and memorable brand story.

One of the most important factors is a character which can be you or your company. When you know your true potential, you are in a much stronger position to let people know about you. Explore what you have got to offer to your customers and what makes you different from the others in your particular industry.

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