So I am really kind of irritated that it is 2015 and we still have to have this conversation.
- Runaway exploitive capitalism
- Shoddy (unethical) marketing
- Thieving consultants
- Clients who go the cheap route
- General ignorance about the difference between branding and propaganda
...branding has a really bad name in some quarters. (Unless you're talking about personal branding, which is seen as legitimate career development.)
The fact of the matter is, branding is the only way you can hope for your enterprise to succeed in the long-term, period.
In the olden days it was about gaining the customer's trust. Nowadays that is sort of true, you want to tell real from fake, but most people already know that branding is frequently only the illusion of added value.
Branding today is very simply about running your business as the tight ship that fiscal responsibility and revenue stewardship requires.
You wouldn't make a business move without your lawyer or accountant, unless you were completely stupid. Well guess what?
Branding is exactly the same!
Old-fashioned communication is great, but it can only take you so far. Because you are only explaining what already exists.
To build a brand, you must envision the future. Not everyone can do that and it's why brand people make the best business-men and -women.
It is about giving birth to the child, and getting him or her ready to survive In the big world. When you won't be there to guide them.
All opinions my own. Photo via Jose Segura / Flickr.