In such a competitive world, being able to sell and get customers is no longer enough for the survival of our business. It is essential to build loyalty and create lasting long-term relationships. This article will discover to what extent it is necessary and some basic strategies to start doing it.
A fact that, although it may seem strange, has its explanation. This happens because the purchase decisions are not rational but purely emotional, although later, we justify them with data and objective arguments. And for this reason, the big brands invest so much money in making consumers perceive them or feel a certain way.
For this reason, in today’s article, we will talk about this whole discipline called branding. Among the topics that we will deal with, we will see what exactly branding is dedicated to, applying it in business, when it is more interesting to invest in working on it and how to start doing it.
What Is Branding, And What Is It Really For?
In essence, branding is the tool used by brands to conquer the minds and hearts of consumers because, as you already know, emotions are what drive us to buy and consume.
In this sense, branding is a discipline within marketing that encompasses all the specific actions carried out by a brand related to positioning, purpose and values to create conscious and unconscious connections with the public to influence their marketing decisions. Purchase.
In other words, this discipline is dedicated to making a brand known and desired so that it does not become just another. In short, it serves to establish a differentiation concerning the competition so that “they can no longer compete” because they no longer do so for price or product quality but values, personality, beliefs or, in other words, for our particular way of being and doing things.
It is a tool that is not only used by businesses but that we all use in one way or another. Whether applying for a job, an internship or selling our project, branding or “the brand” can make that slight big difference that makes them remember us and take us into account. It’s about having something that makes us connect with people.
In short, that slight big difference is still a strategy, and that is what branding is essentially about.
For all the above, some of the benefits that branding can bring to a business are:
- Customer recognition, they remember us, and we are no longer just another product or service.
- Customer loyalty, since it is easier to create an emotional bond with someone “human” and a long-term relationship.
- Greater confidence because the brand is humanized.
- It gives you a clear strategy to move forward as a business when launching new products or services and marketing campaigns that work.
- It helps get many more clients since a universe with which they can feel identified and attracted is created.
- It generates more economic profits because marketing is much more effective and efficient and increases the repeat purchase rate.
When Is It Essential To Work on Branding, And How To Work On It?
Despite all these benefits, working on branding should not always be a priority. Although it is perfect for our business, “creating a brand” requires a lot of time and money, so we must know how to choose the right time.
When we are starting a new business and validating it, it is not the most crucial investment. However, it is interesting to learn about branding to choose, for example, the name of our brand strategically, since this can benefit us in the long term.
Level 1. New Market.
These are those products or services that, because they are new, do not have direct competition. As you can imagine, this phase usually lasts a short time and more for large markets where there is a great opportunity. This causes new competitors to quickly launch themselves to try to take a piece of the cake.
Branding is usually not too important if you are in a new market since the product or service you promote already differentiates itself. You should take it into account to start working on it when the competitors begin to arrive. In this case, marketing has to explain our main benefit in a clear, direct, and straightforward way.
Level 2. The Competition Arrives.
At this point, there is no longer a virgin market, but competitors begin to arrive attracted by the profits generated.
If you are in a level 2 market, it is essential to start working on some differentiation from your competitors. We will focus on the benefits and characteristics of our product or service concerning others, and all marketing must revolve around it.
Level 3. Differentiation.
Here the market already identifies the product or service and knows the alternatives within the market. In this case, the client has a choice, so we have to stand out so that the client decides for us.
If you are in a level 3 market, it is interesting to tend to the specialization of the offer, that is, to create much more specific products or services thinking about our type of client or types of clients. It is essential to know our clients much better than before to align the offer and all the communication concerning their tastes or needs.
Level 4. Credibility.
At this point, the market starts to get quite challenging due to a supply glut. It is essential to show what we are selling more than ever, and that means that we must work hard on testimonials, reviews, and social proof in this phase.
If you are in a level 4 market, you must rely on social proof to grow. That means that you should collect a lot of testimonials or opinions, either through Amazon, Google or the resources you generate.
Level 5. Connect.
At this final stage, we can only focus on the brand’s values, purpose, and philosophy. In this phase, the focus when buying is no longer on the product or service due to the excellent saturation but on the emotional component that we manage to communicate and transmit. A feature that has to do with personal convictions or lifestyle.
If you are in a level 5 market, you should spend a large part of your budget on branding. If you are starting and have few resources, entering a market with these characteristics may not be the best thing to do. In that case, you should review your business model first and introduce innovation.