A quick glance at these two words, branding and marketing, makes one assume that they are synonyms. But branding and marketing are two different business strategies, whose common goal is business development. Branding is something that tells your customers what your products and services are all about, while marketing simply sends a message about your products to the customers. In other words, your brand is who you are, and marketing is something that follows your brand.
Branding and Marketing – a Business’ Actions Define the Brand
Howard Schultz, a famous entrepreneur and the executive chairman of Starbucks Coffee Company, says “Authentic brands don’t emerge from marketing cubicles or advertising agencies. They emanate from everything the company does.” This is so true.
Branding is independent of marketing strategies. When your products and services start speaking, the need for the marketing strategies goes down. This doesn’t mean that you do not need marketing strategies at all, it simply means that your branding activities will do most of the work for you. Every single activity that your business carries out can have an impact on your brand.
Branding and Marketing: The Role of Branding in Business at Three Major Stages
1. Start-Up Stage
Start-ups need identification, and it is from here the need for branding begins. Their branding strategies state why they matter, and what makes them different from the other companies in the same niche. This is crucial for a start-up company’s long run. For any company that’s in its start-up stage, it is paramount for its employees to connect to the purpose of that brand, which will help the company stand out from the crowd.
2. High-Growth Stage
When a start-up company gets its branding strategies right, the next stage for that company would be the high-growth stage. In this stage the brand has already been built, and the prime agenda now would be to reach as many customers as possible. Combining a few business strategies with brand building strategies would be an excellent idea at this stage, which will bring some really good sales to the company.
3. Established Enterprise Stage
One may wonder if a fully established company needs branding activities. The answer is YES. This is because today the market is very competitive and the demands of the customers, or the clients, keep changing. To keep up with these demands, to sustain the growth of the business, and to handle the new competition, refreshing your branding strategies becomes imperative.
At the end of the day, a parameter is necessary to measure the success of your branding strategies. When it comes to the branding the parameter would be the number of loyal customers you have earned – who would turn into brand ambassadors in the long run.
Branding and Marketing: The Importance of Marketing in Digital Strategy
Now, let us see how important the marketing is. Through marketing, you will be taking your brand’s products and services to the market. But, it being sold there or being spoken about happens only when you have built a strong brand. Today the term marketing defines many things, unlike it once did. Traditional marketing involved simple strategies that used to cost a huge sum of money, but one could not predict exact results.
Today there is a whole new world of digital marketing which has loads of options: costly means of promotion, cost-effective means of promotion, promotions that are cost-free, etc. The best part about the digital marketing strategies is that they allow you to reach a wide range of audience in less time and with less effort, and this is one of the reasons why these strategies are becoming popular. Calculating the ROI is also very easy with these digital marketing activities.
A few marketing strategies will help you in brand positioning as well as in sales, and that’s the beauty of digital marketing. The best parameter to measure the success of marketing would be the web traffic and sales.
Why it’s important to know the difference between branding and marketing
As said above, marketing is a lot different than branding. What makes me say so? In marketing you talk, on the other hand, in branding, you listen. Your customers will have complete control over your brand, and they will be telling you what your brand is, how they want your brand to be, and this is because it’s only them who will know about it (the way it is being projected in the market).
Effective Use of Branding and Marketing Together for the Success of Your Business.
Many businesses believe that it is only the strong marketing strategies that will lead to a successful business. But as a businessman, if you are looking to have a long-term business, then you should know that marketing alone will not be enough to meet the demands that today’s customers have. With only the marketing strategies, people will remember your products for a short period of time. And this is when branding becomes necessary, as this defines your products and registers your products on your customer’s mind, which is pretty important. Thus, for better impact, you should combine your marketing strategies with a few powerful brand positioning strategies.
These days, Wikipedia is proving to be an excellent Marketing and Branding channel. Of course, this may sound a little weird, as Wikipedia strictly condemns any form of marketing or promotions on its pages. Then, how does it help you in your business? Well, that’s through improving your online presence and online reputation. Having a Wikipedia page makes a brand reputable, instantly. It also improves the Google ranking through which a brand’s online presence will be enhanced.
Here’s what the successful brands in the market do –
First, they understand the difference between branding and marketing, and then use this understanding to build a few powerful marketing strategies that blend well with their brand building strategies. These brands give importance to their customers’ opinions, desires, and hopes, and design their brands accordingly. So, what about the marketing strategies? Marketing campaigns are used as the communication channel through which the brand’s value is communicated via various forums that promise maximum exposure to the brand, its products, and its services.
Are your branding and marketing strategies in sync to build the brand? Share your thoughts in the comments below!