Does a business need a brand? Can it succeed without one?

This is a question I’ve asked myself many times when managing various online advertising campaigns for clients, big and small, in a wide range of sectors.

Does a company really need to build brand awareness? Does a company need brand identity and brand values?

Whether they do or don’t, it seems there’s no escape from it.

If you don’t have a brand as such, your company will be branded as ‘no-brand’ and this will create a brand identity in and of itself. On the other hand, if you indeed do have a brand and want to develop it, ensure you have a brand strategy (or a non-brand brand strategy) in place.

Whether you want it or not, people will have a view on your company, positive or negative. And this needs to be managed and monitored. After all, the way your company presents itself to the world will determine its success or lack thereof.

So, we’ve come to a realisation a business will have a brand, deliberately or naturally. I guess it’s almost like us humans having a heart and soul – it comes with the packaging.

What next?

Have an action plan in place. Ensure your strategy maps out the necessary steps needed in order to make you brand unique and recognised for the right reasons and by the right people.

Let’s have a look at some of the elements that you should think about when starting your branding process:

  • What are your company’s core values?
  • How do you want your business to be perceived by people?
  • What is the tone of voice for your company? Is it formal or informal? Chatty or serious?
  • What is your brand identity? How are you going to be visually recognised in the market (think logo!)

Once these questions have been answered and defined, your company is on a good way to establishing it’s positioning in the market and making its mark amongst competitors.

Whilst it seems impossible to avoid branding, it’s also hard to justify using marketing budget purely on building awareness for your brand. A business needs to deliver measurable ROI.

I believe there’s a solution to be found! Two words: Blend and combine.

Combine your brand building efforts with your business objectives and blend it all into one effective marketing strategy. Ensure your brand messaging is targeted to your desired audience and simultaneously have an unbeatable promotion or offering, enhanced by a strong call to action to pull in sales.

If you really think about it, no matter how soulful and spiritual consumers are, they still want a damn good deal at the end of the day. They also want their preferred brand to make them feel happy and complete. They want to be a part of a brand and use it to improve their lives. Might sound exaggerated, but it’s definitely something to give a second thought to.

Take mobiles for example: whichever the lucky brands may be, 70% of us now can’t live without our smartphones. Who would ever have predicted that?

Branding is not something to take lightly, no matter how fluffy it may sound. Perhaps the next thing people won’t be able to live without will be your brand!

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