In the age of social media, excellent products and services are not enough leverage to become a successful business. Hence, to increase visibility in a fiercely competitive market, companies across industries are using brand marketing as the primary tool.
Your brand marketing decides the attributes of your brand in the eyes of your consumers. It creates a unique identity for your products and services and promotes it through different mediums.
Despite all its perks, many companies see brand marketing as a waste of resources and don’t prioritize it enough.
In today’s article, we will delve into the importance of brand marketing and how it has changed the face of top brands for the better.
What is brand marketing?
Marketing is the promotional efforts to endorse a brand’s products and services. But brand marketing is a little different from traditional marketing.
Brand marketing, in its essence, is a long-term strategy aimed at improving brand awareness, recognition, consideration, and value through scaling a loyal customer base. It focuses on building visibility around the unique identity of a brand.
Brand marketing involves five stages:
All the above seemingly smaller aspects add up to define a company’s overall brand.
Brand marketing draws attention not to individual products but to the brand as a whole. For example, McDonald’s brand marketing has rendered them an identity that’s easily recognizable across the world — from their arched Golden logo to their signature happy meals.
The importance of brand marketing
Many companies are doubtful when it comes to investing in brand marketing. They rely on traditional marketing to drive their business. However, brand marketing is essential for several reasons. Here are a few:
Increased brand awareness and recognition
The market today is cutthroat, no matter what industry you are active in. Customers have tens of alternatives to choose from. In this landscape, your success depends on your brand’s visibility.
Customers will buy your products when you are easily recognizable. That’s where brand marketing comes into play. It highlights your uniqueness as a business and gives them a reason to choose you over your competitors.
Brand marketing promotes the positives of your brand and familiarizes them with your mission. It promotes your brand’s colour theme and logo so that you are easily recognizable in the crowd. Your efforts in branding your company realize its potential through brand marketing.
Improved customer loyalty
Once you develop awareness around your products and services, constant brand marketing will keep them coming back for more. For example, Sephora built brand awareness by targeting millennial women as their core market.
Through its brand marketing, Sephora has mastered how to resonate with the younger and modern female crowd. It excelled at driving engagement and positioned itself as a reliable brand that caters to people with different skin colours.
Their efforts in brand marketing paid off and built them a loyal customer base. According to Statista, Sephora had the highest sales in the beauty sector in the U.S. in 2021.
Differentiation from competitors
If done well, the top benefit of brand marketing is that it can help you outshine your competition. Brand marketing promotes your unique attributes. Once you find out your USPs, you can market them heavily and emphasize them in your branding.
For example, Colgate has established itself as the go-to brand for oral hygiene. Despite the competition, they marketed their brand by educating people rather than pushing products on them.
Colgate’s brand marketing involves sharing important tips on taking care of your oral health. Their advertisements, particularly on social media platforms, host a series of informative videos. They have also established an oral care centre to become more than a mere toothpaste brand.
This way, their brand marketing strategy has helped them create an image that doesn’t only sell toothpaste and become the most trusted oral hygiene brand across the globe.
Increased customer trust and credibility
Through brand marketing, you highlight the best qualities of your brand. You promote statistics on why your existing customer base trusts you. With increasing visibility, you become more capable of gathering feedback from your target market. Such insights help you improve services and win customers’ trust. People see the effort you put in to accommodate their needs.
Brand marketing pushes your business into the current conversations. When people talk about it on digital platforms, it gives you social proof and drives your conversion rate.
Increased company value
Excellent branding is not enough to drive business. People must see and resonate with your branding for it to work.
As discussed earlier, brand marketing shines a light on your business’s personality. Through methodically designed campaigns, it makes your brand relatable to your target audience and builds a loyal following.
When you invest in impactful brand marketing, you ensure firm roots for your company in a very competitive market. It keeps you relevant and encourages your customer to invest in your services.
However, the efforts need to be constant and agile to keep moving in the race. It helps you sustain repeat customers and a loyal following.
All this generates constant business and helps you outperform your competitors. As a result, your company value increases over time.
Helps in the customer journey
The data you gather while running your brand marketing campaigns gives you better insight into how your customers interact with and feel about your brand.
By analyzing your marketing efforts, you can see each point where they engage with your brand. You can measure their impressions of each interaction, particularly those that take place before they decide to make a purchase.
This not only helps you improve your customer experience but also allows you to enhance your marketing endeavours in the future. It helps you manage your customers through their purchase journey for more complex or higher-risk purchase decisions. An aligned brand marketing will help customers make informed choices and answer their queries.
Examples of successful brand marketing campaigns
While there are numerous examples of brands making a mark through their brand marketing strategies, some stand out for their exceptional approach.
Whether it's a clothing brand or a pioneering gadget company, they have become the frontrunners in tier industries.
Today, we will discuss two brands whose brand marketing is worth learning from:
Nike's "Just Do It" campaign
Nike, like many other brands, sells sports and fitness apparel. So how did it outperform the competitors and become one of the world’s highest-profile athletic brands? By marketing the brand to be appealing not only to sports enthusiasts and athletes but also to the common crowd.
Nike’s “Just Do It” campaign embodies that very goal and has become the signature slogan of the brand. Their brand marketing focuses on inspiring positive feelings in the audience regarding fitness.
Nike doesn’t conform to the typical image of a sports-centric brand. Instead, the brand promotes an image that resonates with resonate with the values and desires of different people.
Originating in 1988, the “Just Do It” campaign featured both professional and amateur athletes talking about the emotions they feel as they exercise. One of Nike’s first advertisements for this campaign featured 80-year-old marathoner Walt Stack, who explained how he runs 17 miles every morning.
By showing that anything is possible if you are driven enough, it encouraged the common viewers to take a healthier lifestyle.
But Nike did not let the popularity of the campaign remain stagnant. With time, the brand found a way to align its brand marketing with the changing fitness industry and the digital crowd.
Nike uses emphatic research to understand what makes people tick. It focuses on building an emotional connection with the audience. This approach clearly reflects in Nike’s social media strategy and its advertisements.
Nike heavily leverages the reach of social media platforms to keep itself relevant in an increasingly digital world. They have built a profile that is consistent with their brand.
For example, Nike maintains a uniform tone throughout its Instagram profile.
It makes the brand easily recognizable to the audience. Besides campaigning with celebrity athletes, Nike also shines a light on underrated talent in the sports world. They showcase the common people trying to get into a healthy lifestyle. This portrays them as a relatable brand and scales their customer base.
To appeal to different segments of its consumer base, Nike shapes its brand marketing accordingly.
For example, to promote its women's apparel, Nike has a different Instagram profile — Nike Women. Here they showcase women with different body types, which communicates the fact that Nike is an inclusive brand that caters to women of all sizes.
Apple's "Think Different" campaign
While there are thousands of gadget companies around the world, none of those rival the immense popularity of Apple products. Every Apple product launch witnesses press coverage, with frenzied Apple fans queuing to get their hands on the latest new product.
Apple is not a brand anymore, it has become a phenomenon. And a significant credit if this popularity goes to its “Think Different” campaign.
In 1997, Apple was going through a particularly hard time. The company had only 90 days of money left. That’s when they launched the “Think Different” campaign, which changed the way the world saw brand marketing.
“Think Different” is not a grammatically correct phrase, since an adverb does not follow the word “think”. That was the precise goal of the founder Steve Jobs. Why? Because the slogan aligned with the intended message.
This approach changed the course of the electronics industry and established the foundation of apple as the most innovative gadget brand.
The campaign turned personal computing into a metaphor for rebellion, individuality, and change. It stood out in the crowd because it portrayed the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, and the troublemakers.
Apple selected bold thinkers to appear in the ''Think Different'' campaign. It showcased men and women who were not merely great in a certain field but changed the course of history through. They included unique and successful personalities like Albert Hitchcock, Pablo Picasso, John Lennon, Albert Einstein, and many more.
The campaign portrayed how Apple would construct a radically different future from the current one. The brand didn’t try to fit in. It embraced its authentic image and endorsed that to drive a loyal customer base around the world. It’s been almost a quarter of a century since the inception of “Think Different”, but the slogan still resonates with people around the world.
Lean into the importance of brand marketing
No matter how innovative and impactful your products and services are, without the right brand marketing strategy, you will not reach the right audience. If you can’t push your brand into the right space with the right approach, you are bound to fade from your audience’s mind.
So, if you still haven’t integrated your brand image into your marketing strategy, now is the time to start.
But initiating any new plan into your business may seem tricky.
To learn the ins and outs of brand marketing from the top 1%, enroll in Growth School’s educational programs. The courses here will take you beyond the bookish knowledge and prepare you to face the challenges of the real-life business world.