Marketing and branding are often easily mistaken to be the same thing when in reality, they are two completely different concepts. Marketing is the method in which you deliver your message.
Your brand is who you are.
Let’s dive a little deeper into the different aspects.Photo Credit: Kissmetrics
Branding is your strategy. It’s who you are. In order to discover who your brand is, you have to ask yourself several questions. What are your core values? What inspired you to build your business? What makes you unique? What do you want to come to mind when someone hears your business name? How do you want customers to feel when they think about your business? Answering these types of questions will help you to better understand who your brand is and it will cultivate what your consumers can expect of you and what they’ll get when they purchase your product or service. These types of questions are related to your internal operations and culture. Therefore, what you build on the inside will radiate outside. Your branding can underlie your marketing efforts for today and the future.
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Marketing refers to the tools you use to deliver the message of your brand. Marketing will continually evolve. It will be geared toward sectors of your target audience while still keeping the core values of your brand. Your marketing can be funny, heartfelt or serious. It can be a mix of keywords, photos, text, charts, videos and graphs. Some of the more common methods SEO, content marketing, radio, print campaigns, television and mobile marketing, but there are plenty more online and offline marketing methods you can utilize.
Which Comes First?
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Since branding is the core of your marketing strategy, branding must always come first. It’s essential to define who you are before you begin to devise your marketing methods, tools and tactics. Your brand is what will keep your clients coming back for more, the foundation on which you build your customer loyalty. While your marketing efforts will change with the times, your brand will remain the same. Even if you make adjustments to your brand, the changes would be in response to growth or services offered. It’s rarely a direct change in core principles, values or missions.
A picture speaks a thousand words, and that is where your branding and marketing will overlap. When selecting imagery, branding and marketing become one in the same. Also keep in mind when selecting company colors, logo, and graphics, they must represent your brand first, but they will play a substantial role in your marketing campaign.
It’s with your branding you create timeless connections. Other companies will offer comparable products and services, but it will always be your ongoing branding that keeps customers coming back. Your clients will even shape your brand. You can control the messages marketed, but you cannot control how they are perceived to your audience. In most cases, the most powerful branding happens when you listen to what your consumers want. They will tell you what your brand is, or what they need it to be.
At Design Moves, we help businesses distinguish their branding and their marketing. We know the critical differences between the two and can quickly strategize the right steps to take to create a solid foundation for the two.