A com­mon mis­con­cep­tion is that brand­ing is sim­ply a logo or slo­gan. Although these ele­ments are a key part of it, it does, how­ev­er, go far beyond this. Brand­ing involves every aspect of a customer’s expe­ri­ence, from your logo to your web­site, your social media posts, staff uni­forms and adver­tis­ing; it even encom­pass­es the way in which you answer the phone to how you inter­act with cus­tomers.

In short, brand­ing is the way in which your cus­tomer per­ceives you when they hear or think of your com­pa­ny name, ser­vice or prod­uct. This includes every­thing they think they know about your brand, includ­ing fac­tu­al infor­ma­tion, such as your bright yel­low pack­ag­ing, but also emo­tive ele­ments, like for exam­ple that it’s lux­u­ri­ous.

So why is branding so important? Take a look at our top 5 reasons why you should take your time developing your brand…

‣ Brand­ing pro­motes recog­ni­tion
Effec­tive brand­ing can pro­mote recog­ni­tion for your busi­ness. If your brand is con­sis­tent and easy to recog­nise, it can help peo­ple feel more at east pur­chas­ing from you. Peo­ple adhere to famil­iar­i­ty and if you’re remem­bered as a qual­i­ty provider, then you will encour­age repeat busi­ness as they are more like­ly to choose your prod­uct or ser­vice again.

‣ Your brand sets you apart from the com­pe­ti­tion
In a high­ly com­pet­i­tive glob­al mar­ket, it is cru­cial to stand out from the crowd. Remem­ber that you are no longer com­pet­ing on a local stage, you’re now com­pet­ing in the glob­al econ­o­my- Your brand will there­fore help you stand out from the thou­sands or mil­lions of sim­i­lar organ­i­sa­tions around the world.

‣Strong brand­ing gen­er­ates refer­rals
A strong brand can cre­ate refer­rals or viral traf­fic because peo­ple love to tell oth­ers about the brands they like. Peo­ple eat, lis­ten and wear brands, and they’re con­stant­ly telling oth­ers about the ones they love. In fact, 84% of con­sumers have said that they ‘always or some­times’ take action based on per­son­al recommendations.1

Imag­ine falling in love with a brand but when you go to rec­om­mend it to a friend, you can’t remem­ber it- this is why strong brand­ing is so impor­tant; you can’t tell some­one about a brand you can’t remem­ber.

‣ Brand­ing sets expec­ta­tions
A strong, con­sis­tent brand will allow the cus­tomer to know exact­ly what to expect each time they encounter your busi­ness. A pro­fes­sion­al appear­ance will build cred­itabil­i­ty and trust, which bodes well as peo­ple are more like­ly to pur­chase from a busi­ness that appears legit­i­mate.

Your brand rep­re­sents your promise to the cus­tomer- like an unspo­ken con­tract so to speak.

‣ A strong brand adds val­ue
A strong and suc­cess­ful brand will add val­ue to your busi­ness, well beyond phys­i­cal assets.

Con­sid­er com­pa­nies such as Apple, Face­book and Coca-Cola; they are worth much more than their premis­es, equip­ment and/or prod­ucts. It has been their brand that’s increased the company’s val­ue, far exceed­ing their phys­i­cal val­ue. In 2014, the Coca-Cola brand name alone was worth $67million; account­ing for more than 54% of the company’s stock mar­ket val­ue.

In today’s world, brand­ing is more impor­tant than ever. But a good brand won’t man­i­fest overnight- it’s a result of a metic­u­lous plan­ning, devel­op­ment and growth, which is why many start-ups and small busi­ness­es neglect it with­out real­is­ing the impact it has.

Good brand­ing not only increas­es the val­ue of a com­pa­ny, but it pro­vides employ­ees with direc­tion and moti­va­tion, and makes acquir­ing new cus­tomers eas­i­er.