A Company Brand – what does that really mean?

11 February 2015,   By

The word “Brand” is one of those terms widely used, and often mistakenly so. Many Small Business owners we work with consider their company “Logo” as being the extent of their brand, but a company Brand is so much more than this!

A brand is a name, term, design or other feature that distinguishes one seller’s product from those of others. Brands are used in business, marketing, and advertising. Initially, livestock branding was adopted to differentiate one person’s cattle from another’s by means of a distinctive symbol burned into the animal’s skin with a hot branding iron. A modern example of a brand is Coca-Cola which belongs to the Coca-Cola Company.

A brand is much more than a logo or stylised products. A brand should leave a lasting impression and be your promise to a customer. It tells your customers what they can expect from your products or services and most importantly it differentiates your offering from that of your competitors. Your brand is derived from who your company is, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.

How to define your Brand

Working to define your brand becomes a journey of business self-discovery which can take time to do, and can often feel an “uncomfortable” process. There are many questions to ask, including:

  • Why does your company exist?
  • What is your companies mission?
  • What qualities do you want customers to associate with your company?
  • What do your customers already think of your company?
  • What does your company do differently (or better) than your competition?

Doing the research and learning the wants and requirements of your customers is not always easy to do, but is a vital process for building a successful brand and business.

Build your Brand

The foundation of your brand may be your logo, your website, your promotional and packaging materials, (and these should always effectively communicate your brand), however, your Brand becomes a specific perception in “peoples minds” concerning the qualities and attributes of your company and products/services.

Here are some tips to help build your brand awareness.

  • Make sure you do have a professional logo, and use it everywhere you can.
  • Develop a tagline to share a meaningful concise statement that captures the essence of your brand.
  • Create a unique “Voice” for your company communications, and use this consistently across all written, visual, social media etc.
  • Create “Brand Standards” for your marketing. Use a similar colours, logo placement, look and feel throughout all product marketing/advertising
  • Be true to your Brand. Customers want you to be true to your promise if they are to return to you or refer your company to others.
  • Be consistent throughout. Probably the most important element to building your successful brand.

Successful brands are not built overnight, spend the time doing your research so you don’t waste time taking your brand in a direction that won’t allow you to reach your goals.
Understand your competitors and your audience, so you can develop a brand that promises the right things to the right people.
Remember, a brand is clear, reliable and believable to both your customers and your company’s staff.

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