Branding By the Numbers

Creating a brand doesn’t happen overnight, nor is it as easy as just putting out a company with a logo or mascot and hoping that it sticks by drowning customers in your marketing rhetoric. And while every marketing firm out there will talk in circles about “branding” and “voice”, it all really boils down to three elements: words, images, and emotion. Or rather, to create a brand, you combine the right words with well-crafted images to elicit an emotional response from the customer. This A+B=C equation of branding is the key to getting your company to register at a deeper level with customers, who will remember your brand and all it represents when they’re getting ready to make a purchase.

Let’s look at the three steps…

Choose the right words: Once you know what your company sells, you need to know what it stands for. What are the values it promotes? What values to your target customers hold dear? What word do you want the customer to immediately think of when they see your logo? To start write down a list of the values and words you want associated with your brand. It may seem like an overly simple starting point, but you’d be surprised how many companies jump straight into marketing their product without first thinking through these basic points. This list marks the first step to creating that spark that will make your brand catch on like wildfire.

Craft your image: Now that you know what you stand for, it’s time to figure out how to show it. When it comes to imagery, whether static or moving, you need to focus on two things: your company’s story and the values it represents. A well-chosen image can make all the difference in the world. From the big picture down to the tiniest details within, which the customer may only notice unconsciously, it all inspires them to feel one way or another about your brand; this applies to pictures in advertising as well as the general image your company presents of itself through stationery, website design, delivery vehicles, etc. The image you craft for your brand can work for or against you in assuring potential clients that you’re the company for them. The right combination of overt and covert cues in your images can be the difference between clients calling you or your competitor.

Inspire an emotion: No one remembers a company that elicits apathy; an emotional response is the key to getting your brand to stick in their mind. Unfortunately this is a double-edged sword, as customers are just as likely to remember you for a good branding message as they are for a bad one. This is why finding that perfect pairing of message and imagery is so important: how you present yourself can inspire positive reactions as easily as it can negative ones. If your customer can look at your brand and associate it with positive values and emotions, they’re going to remember you when it comes time to make a purchase.

And that’s when you know you’ve successfully built a brand.

The bottom line? Branding isn’t about a logo and giving it mass exposure, it’s about getting customers to connect with your company in a positive way. If you can do that, then the world of marketing is your oyster.

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