“Your brand is what other people say about you when you are not in the room.” Jeff Bezos
In the 21st century customers not only look for products but also brand value. They want buy and hoard things that have an aspirational value, a name and a pride to associate with.
Branding have become such a precious treasure for businesses that brand value itself is recognized as an intangible asset in financial statements. Enterprises are ready to go to war against anyone who infringe their brand name or patented products. Such is the power and value of a brand.
From an organizational perspective, maintaining a brand image is not an easy task either. It is literally a tight-rope walk where even the slightest imbalance can throw the reputation down a steep cliff and to untimely death.
Especially with social media, live video streaming and news channels eyeing for breaking news from all corners, brands have to be extra careful and maintain vigil over their branding efforts and sustenance.
If you own a brand, or are in the process of building one, you are steps away from knowing how to develop and maintain an identifiable brand image for your company.
One common feature among all global brands is that, they are all pioneers of customer service and user experience.
Take for instance, Apple Inc. – the multinational technology company is popular for the extra mile it walks to satisfy and make customers feel special. Not to mention its utilitarian website set up with complete security features including Extended Validation SSL that makes customers feel safe while shopping.Learn more about Extended Validation SSL & its benefits to business.
Another popular brand is Four Seasons – the chain of luxury hotels which is the first choice for many when it comes to premium accommodation. The brand has a class of its when it comes to giving rest and comfort to customers.
Both these brands are able to enjoy a strong brand identity quite distinct from their rivals because of their excellence in customer service and user experience.
A logo is a symbol, emblem or design that customers use to identify a brand. It serves in differentiating a brand and its from competition in a common marketplace. However, most brands misunderstand their logo to be their brand.
The logo does not become a brand unless the business does something ground-breaking. Take for instance the half bitten Apple logo of Apple computers. It is such a simple and peculiar logo that one might even wonder how it serves as a logo.
However, over the years through its stunning range of innovative products, Apple has given its logo a whole new meaning. People recognize it like a royal insignia. It has become a status symbol only because of what Apple does as a business and not for the logo design.
Takeaway: As in #1 user experience and customer service that a business delivers is what gives the business an identity and its a logo a brand value.
The prime reason why customers pay money for a product or service is because they feel it provides some value. The product/service addresses a definite problem or makes easy something that without the product is difficult. Value addition is at the core of brand.
Customers value a product/service based on the distinct advantages it can provide to them for the money they are parting with. They don’t want the product to be overly expensive or cheap in quality. It must their needs bang on without amiss.
Thus, value addition is the core principle of a brand. Customers, businesses, managers, public and everyone else judges a brand’s value based on the value it adds to them. Without value addition a brand is nothing but just a business that exists in the market.
Remember Nokia? Yeah, everybody remembers Nokia but hardly anyone is using them right now. The Finland based manufacturer was grazed to ground by competition because the brand did not innovate with changing times.
When the era of smartphone was initiated by Samsung, Motorola and the likes, Nokia was still sticking on to making feature phones with hard buttons. A sure recipe for disaster for a brand, especially one in the technology industry. The key for a brand to remain valuable in its industry is constant innovation and evolution.
IBM started off as a company that made manual weighing machine for traders. But with time, its products evolved significantly to include arithmetic calculators before taking a quantum leap to make supercomputers of the world. Today, IBM is recognized as the main inventor of technologies that push human race forward.
In today’s connected world, a brand is better built in social media than anywhere else. Social media has the muscle power to bring together diverse users on a common page. Moreover, the endless choices that social media offers brands to invoke interest in customers further adds to its merit.
Customers also tend to trust those brands more which are easily accessible through social media. From venting customer grievances to showing love for new products, customers use brand social profiles for everything. Businesses in turn also use social media to publicize their marketing material to their followers.
Businesses are more recognized by their brand name than anything else. In this digital world, the brand name has the power to command users to sway to the wish of the business. Therefore, businesses have to pay a heavy price to keep their brand value intact and secure at all times.
That is a task easily said than done. The above mentioned tips are designed to help brands shine their brands in full glory even in a cut-throat competitive environment. It is best suited for startups that are growing into brands or established businesses that are tapping into their reputation.