What is a brand? There is a simple definition; your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.
It’s what your customer thinks of when he or she hears your brand name.
Your brand resides within the hearts and minds of residents, customers, clients, and prospects. It is the sum total of their experiences and perceptions, some of which you can influence, and some that you cannot.
The brand is the first stone set in the construction of a solid structure. Think of it as the cornerstone, it’s the most important piece of any structure because all other stones will be set in reference to this stone.
The brand is the blueprint of your customer experience, it will flavor all conversation about the business, product, town and it will align all advertising and promotional activity.
When we think of advertising we often think of logos and taglines, but it’s important to note that LOGOS and TAGLINES are not brands, they are merely representations of brands. They are the entry point and the shortcut to the brand for your mind.
The story, vision, mission and values need to permeate out of every initiative in order for the brand to be effectively communicated, and to create a connection with said clients.
The tagline is part of the TANGIBLE element to a brand, so is the logo, but the BRAND also consists of intangible elements -- Promise, Perception, Persona, Expectation. All of these elements must work together to consistently communicate your brand promise, shape brand perceptions, meet brand expectations, and define your brand persona.
BRAND PROMISE. At its core, this is a promise to consumers. What will consumers get when they purchase a product or employ your services?
BRAND PERCEPTION. This one is HUGE! Consumers, not companies, build brands. Ultimately, it’s the way consumers perceive a brand that defines it.
PERSONA. Rather than asking, “What is a brand?” a better question might be, “Who is a brand?” Every brand has a persona. Think of your brand as a person. For example – the town of Asheville – known for its unique cuisine, arts and entertainment is often labeled as “artsy”.
BRAND EXPECTATION. Based on your brand promise, consumers develop expectations for your brand. When I shop, eat or live in a certain spot, this is what I can expect – will it be high crime, great schools, safe??
So there you go...the building blocks to developing a solid brand. It's a lot to consider, but if you don't, who will? And if you need help, contact Haven Creative!