Thursday, September 23, 2010

More Myths About Branding

Myth No. 3: Branding is just fluff.

Brand equity can make or break a company. That's the reason people will pay three times as much for a white T-shirt at Nordstrom's than they would at Target. Brand translates into bottom-line sales when done effectively.

You shouldn't deny that if you build a strong foundation and communicate it to the right people at the right time, you will attract just the interested customers you seek. A strong brand guides all the other marketing decisions that drive your company's growth: where to advertise, whom to partner with, how to price your product.

Myth No. 4: Branding Works Immediately

Prospects need to experience your brand multiple times before it sticks. You have to have it out there, present in all your customer touch points, before deciding whether it works.

Branding is about awareness and "mindshare"--the spaces you occupy in people's minds when they see your logo or hear your name. That takes time to build. The Nike swoosh had no meaning during the first many months after it was introduced.

Avoid the temptation to change branding every few months in an effort to chase quarterly sales growth. Yes, if you get feedback that things are not working, you should made changes -- but, hopefully, you will have put the up-front thought and effort into the brand strategy and messaging before implementing it so that only slight tweaks are required.

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To share common sense lessons learned with 40-plus years experience in marketing, sales and as a B2B publisher.