As we talk to more people about taking advantage of generating leads from their website into opportunities we move to the talk of branding and marketing. We find that many people believe they are the same thing rather than two distinct items. Branding and marketing are not the same and each has a very important role that is used collaboratively together in your organization. Using marketing and branding together you can achieve a set of goals. In this article, we will define clearly what branding and marketing is and how each one used collaboratively can be used to grow your business.
What is Branding?
Branding is strategic in nature. A great way of thinking of branding is this analogy: branding is to a company as personality is to a person. Your brand is your identity to the masses. A brand is also a point of view, tone, voice, and a distinct look between you and your competition. Your company culture is part of your brand. Your products and services are also part of your brand. Your brand is what people truly buy into and is ultimately what truly defines you as a business.
Your brand is what separates you from your competitors. As you define, and refine, your brand your message will be heard by your customers and will drive your marketing efforts. Your branding ultimately defines what you stand for.
- Branding is a long-term marketing process (it never ends even if a product or service does)
- Branding has a carryover effect to new products and services as well as all your existing ones
- Branding is not as targeted as marketing is. We see this as a shotgun approach where you are not targeting a specific segment but getting your company (or better brand) known to the masses.
What is Marketing?
Marketing is more tactical than strategic. You use your resources available to promote awareness of your brand, products, and services to your customers and opportunities (e.g. future customers). When you market, you use marketing channels like radio, television, flyers (boots on the ground), and more modern techniques like search engine marketing (SEM), and social media outlets your customers are on.
- Marketing is the process of performing market research, selling products and/or services to customers and promoting them via advertising to further enhance sales.
- Marketing generates the strategy that underlies sales techniques, business communication, and business developments.
- Marketing is an integrated process through which companies build strong customer relationships and creates value for their customers and for themselves.
- Marketing targets specific customer segments. Think of marketing as a surgeon who uses a scalpel to make the cleanest cut and get to the objective in hand.
- Marketing works for your brand. Your marketing efforts need to reach the people most likely to purchase from your brand.
- Marketing is to communicate your brand’s value to your current and potential customers.
Where marketing ends, branding begins
Now that we know the core principals of what branding and marketing is where does one truly end and the other begin? Rather than go into more paragraphs we’re going to go straight to bullet points of where we see the most confusion among people.
- Company Culture
- Your employee
- Customer Research
- Passion or emotion
- Market Research
- Voice of your business
- Tone of your business
- Customers define your brand
- A set of unique values
- Differentiates you
- Color Schemes
- Corporate identity
- Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs)
- Email Marketing
- Design of an employee uniform
- Text Marketing
- Ad Campaigns
- Other Promotional Aspects
- A-frame sidewalk sign promoting a lunch special
- Educational pamphlet
- Quarter-page print ad in a High School sports program
- Everything that a company does that touches a customer
As you can see there are many aspects to marketing and branding where they can truly be crossing paths. Therefore, it is often considered that they are one in the same. When you utilize both and use the strengths of each together your message will get out to your intended audience. Your branding and marketing efforts should work seamlessly together and create a complete picture of your company for consumers to learn about, appreciate, and eventually love.
At JM2 Marketing we work with you to help define your brand and to market your company. We talk on terms everyone can understand, including your customers, by being not only strategic but also tactical when doing marketing. When you are ready to break free our team is here to assist you. We can be reached at 855-456-2669, email at email@example.com, or through our contact form here.