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A brand is more than a product

posted on Friday, March 22, 2013 by Mallory Phillips

Brand CirclesSo you’re interested in branding? What does that even mean? Is the brand your product or service? A logo? A tagline?

When people think of branding, they often think of designing a new logo or developing a new tagline. But your brand is so much more than the logo or packaging—those are just visual representations to help identify it.

Simply put, your brand is the perception people have when thinking about your product or service.

Therefore, you don’t own your brand—consumers do. That might be hard for some to hear, but your brand is what exists in the minds of consumers. This is why it is so important to help form and evolve these consumer perceptions by understanding your brand and utilizing marketing, advertising and public relations strategies.

When looking at your brand, there are three concentric circles of thought. The first is what you think you are. The second is what consumers think you are. And the third is what you actually are. These three circles will never be in complete alignment, and that’s OK. However, with a healthy brand, there is a place where all three circles overlap, and that is where your true brand exists. (If there is no overlapping point, then you need a strategy to help bring those principles closer together.)

At DVL, we help clients discover their brand and develop strategies to mold consumer perception about their brands. Through our branding process, we guide clients to uncover their brand essence—the single space the brand can occupy in a consumer’s mind.

Easy examples include: Nike- athletic performance, Volvo- safety, Disney- magic. Consumers are bombarded with thousands of messages a day, and there is no way to process, let alone remember, all of them. As communicators, it’s crucial to understand the one thing consumers will associate with your brand and to own that space.

Once the brand essence is uncovered, the next step is to develop communications and marketing strategies to support and reinforce that spirit, but we’ll get into that later.

This is a simple explanation of a complex and important process, but we could talk all day about branding. If you would like to learn more about our branding services give us a call. We would love the opportunity to help you discover your brand essence and create a brand strategy.

Tell us in the comments what brands stick out in your mind and why.

Nelson Eddy also contributed to this post.


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  • Sarah

    Thanks for the valuable content Mallory! Very well written.

    • DVLpradical

      Thanks for reading Sarah. We hope you’ll check back in to read future posts.

  • Reginald Edwards

    Nice Article.