If the big companies, like those in the graphic here, manufacture their products and services under a certain name and attach a special name to those products or services (known as a brand)… shouldn’t your small business do the same? I am raising this as a topic because so many entrepreneurs are confused about how their business should operate when it comes to spending money on branding. Branding is so much more than creating a fancy name for a product or service. I feel compelled to dive deep on this topic to save you, as a business owner, money and educate you the topic of branding and specifically why focused branding is so important for every small business owner.
I will teach you the concepts that are so important to your business and help you make more money from branding in this article. I will do so today by answering some questions that I have been asked by my business mentoring clients or by business owners during live events and trainings. I believe these business owners are just like you and want to grow their revenues and profits.
Q: What is a brand or what is brand?
A: Brand is assigning a name, a design, a logo or symbol or sometimes a combination of all of those to a service or product to distinguish it from other services or products. For example: Coca-Cola, NFL, Virgin are all brands.
Q: What is branding?
A: Branding is having your prospects and customers form the opinion you desire about your brand. It is making your brand promise of what is delivered when people experience your brand come alive for the customer.
Q: What is a branded tile or title branding?
A: I always chuckle at this question and have no clue why I get asked this question. Since I have been asked this more than once I have to list it. This in no way relates to branding in a business. In business we don’t brand titles. We brand products and services. So if you ask me about branded titles or title branding I can only say check with someone else because all I know is this sounds to me like you are talking about the title of a car! Someone at an event actually came up to me and asked me, “What does branded title mean?”. I told them to call someone in the car insurance world. LOL
Q: What is brand ambassador?
A: Now this question is one I love to answer! I am a huge believer that every business needs and wants to create brand ambassadors. Brand ambassadors take on the company values and ethics and share the company identity. They represent the company in a very positive light. Brand ambassadors increase the company’s brand awareness and help increase the company’s sales by doing so. They play a very important role in every company.
Q: What is brand equity?
A: Brand equity is the value that a company gets from a product or service by having a recognizable brand name. Companies that make their brands the most recognizable with branding can create more revenue. Consumers typically pay more for a brand that they recognize for example Coke vs. generic cola.
Q: What does brand mean?
A: The concept of brand in marketing is the process of creating a unique image and name for a product or service that a company provides. When you have done a good job of creating a brand a potential consumer will recognize your product or service as soon as they see the image or hear the name. They don’t have any question in their mind of “what brand is it” because a company has done a very comprehensive marketing and advertising campaign to thoroughly seal that brand in the minds of prospects and consumers. For example, if you look at the now famous Nike swoosh logo standing on its own you automatically think Nike. That is because Nike has done a great job of getting their brand into your mind. If you ever wondered “what does branded mean” think Nike swoosh.
Now I have to share my favorite and all time funniest question … You just never know as a speaker who is going to ask you what when you open up and do a question and answer from the stage. So, I agreed to do a question/answer as part of a panel after giving a keynote speech on branding and marketing for a very large conference that many business owners were attending. I was asked about 25 very important questions and answered them along with other panel members. The moderator said we had time for only one final question and there were about 50 hands raised. He selected a woman to ask the final question who seemed to be very excited to ask her question. I felt it must be another urgent business question and was attentively listening. The microphone was passed to me first meaning I would be the first panel member to answer. I sat ready to fully hear the question.
She asked the following question – and no, I am not joking – ,”I am so glad we are speaking about brands. I noticed your lipstick color, Terri, and I am about the same skin tone as you. I am wondering what is the best makeup brand?”.
I looked at her and thought to myself that she was making a joke and then I realized her face was serious and she was waiting for my answer. The audience was laughing and my colleagues on stage were nervously looking at one another and at me. The moderator was starring at me. I think very curious how I was going to respond and a bit nervous at the same time.
Choices were running through my head. I could explain to her the difference between brands and branding as we had been speaking about and as I had referred to branding in my keynote or I could simply tell her my preferred make up brand. My gut said she really wanted the answer to my makeup brand. As odd as the question was and as awkward as I felt, I answered,” MAC is my makeup”.
She looked very happy and the questions and answers were over.
Why do I relate that odd question here?
A word as simple as brand can stir up many things in many people. In her case it brought up the question of wanting to know the name of a brand. This is an illustration of how important a brand name can be!
How will you get your brand recognized in the marketplace? Comment on this post.