What is BRANDING?

If you follow my blog or ever check out my social media handles, you’ll see that I talk a lot about branding. A LOT! That’s because I LOVE talking about branding! 🙂

So what is branding, exactly?

If you ask someone what branding is and they answer that it’s your logo, your company colors or maybe any marketing material used to market the business..

AANK!!! Wrong!

Ok Not entirely wrong. But that is NOT the answer you want to hear from someone, especially if they’re in marketing and you’re talking to them about marketing your company. They (and you) need to truly understand what branding is.

The real answer is EVERYTHING is branding. Branding is the story you, your company, your employees and your leadership team tell the general public by how you represent yourselves within the company.

So I’ll say it again.. EVERYTHING IS BRANDING!
And branding is everything.

A brand is an energy. It’s felt in the color scheme you choose to go with because of the mood you want display and create. It’s felt in the warmth of your front desk gal’s genuine smile or hug because you’ve created a work “family.”

A brand is in customer service and how people can expect certain situations within your company to be handled.
Do you go above and beyond?
Do you answer emails, phone calls and.. EEK.. the dreaded complaint in a timely and empathetic manner?
Do you answer the phone with excitement and enthusiasm?
Do you answer the phone 10 minutes before closing.. 5 minutes?
Do you answer the phone 2 minutes AFTER closing?
Do you look people in the eyes?
Are you and your team engaging? Is your online presence engaging?
Do you make it all about you or do you make it about them?
Do you make a promise and then actually deliver what you promised?
Do you deliver more than you promised?

A brand is the culture you’ve created within the company and how much team and community and relationships are focused on and fostered.

A brand is seen in the details.
Do you take the time to make sure it’s done right, properly, and it’s a good representation of you and your company before slapping it up on FB, your website, blog, etc.?
Do you look over your written copy a second and third time to make sure there are no spelling errors or grammatical errors?
Are you posting negative posts to drive home a point or do you post things of positivity to inspire and be inspired?

Ok And yes, a brand IS the look and feel of your logo, color scheme, and marketing material. It’s a comprehensive look and feel that shows you thought out the entire message you’re sending and overall look and feel of your company, and it’s not chopped down into projects, sections or departments.

But, most of all, your brand is your STORY. A story that is felt, heard, seen, and BELIEVED because it’s not just a mission statement written on paper, but it’s lived out in every single person and every single thing within the company. It’s the picture you’re painting and putting on display for the world to see.

So let me ask you a question. What brand do you want to represent your company? What do you want people to think of or feel when they see your logo and think of you/your company?

To sum up “branding,” I’ll say this: EVERYTHING SPEAKS. And everything is a part of your brand. Your BRAND is your STORY! So what story is your company telling?

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