The Ins and Outs of Corporate Branding
Having successful corporate branding is crucial for helping your company stick out ahead of the competition. A good brand is more than just an image that your company projects to its customers. In Naomi Klein’s “No Logo” she describes branding as “corporate transcendence.” While this may sound highbrow, companies must find ways to connect with customers in increasingly complex ways to stand out.
Below, learn about how branding has come to dominate our culture, and learn how the legacy of branding can help your company outshine your competition.
A Brief History of Corporate Branding
Since the start of the 20th century, companies have relied on successful branding to outpace the competition. Early successful brands such as Coca-Cola continue to have a grip over the way we view the world. For instance, while Coca-Cola did not invent our current conception of Santa Claus being an old man in a red suit, its mass production of cans with the image of Santa certainly popularized in a way that has shifted our popular conception of the man who lives at the north pole.
To see how successfully branding has permeated the public mind, visit a museum. Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s soup cans are some of the most iconic images of the pop art movement – his legacy is built upon recognizing the power branding had over the minds of Americans. Richard Prince’s “Cowboys” is another example – this painting simply depicts the Marlboro man without any of the logos, but he is still instantly recognizable.
The legacy of Marlboro is essential to the history of successful branding. In 1993, Marlboro was struggling to compete with generic cigarette brands, and slashed their prices by 20% to meet demands. “Marlboro Friday” had rippling effects throughout the corporate world, causing stock value in many American brands to plummet. Many critics theorized that this was “the death of the brand”, believing that a value-minded consumer generation would replace the interest that was sparked in the 80s. As you may have guessed, this was incorrect – 1993 marks the last year that marketing has taken a dip in contemporary American history.
What Makes a Good Brand?
When Marlboro Friday occurred, critics believed that customers’ inability to discern between generic products and more expensive branded products would spell the end of advertising as we know it. We now know better. With the rise of sites such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, people now consider branding inherent to their identity. Successful branding from companies such as Wendy’s use their Twitter presence to sound personal, to make people feel invested in their company as they might be a friend.
But there are plenty of other ways to promote your company image than simply following trends. Strong brands are about playing up issues that people care about, and attaching those to your company. If you think your customers might care that your company is a family-run, American company, use that to your advantage. You understand your customers better than anyone else, and know why they love your product – this is the kindling that will ignite your sales.
Examples of Successful Corporate Branding
When you are watching TV at home, pay attention to what the commercials are telling you. Some of the more fascinating examples of branding is in commercials that talk about their products in abstract terms. When it comes to brand products versus their generic counterparts, it is these abstractions that people are paying for.
Dozens of car companies tout that their cars have excellent safety ratings and fuel efficiency – after a while, customers become blind to this information. As a result, newer car commercials might instead sidle their cars with values like connection, travel, and family. A minivan isn’t just a minivan, it’s a vehicle that brings your family together wherever you go. Pharmaceutical companies that target taboo bodily functions will use imagery of freedom, mobility, or relaxation rather than depicting organs.
It isn’t the product we advertise any longer, but the effects that owning or consuming it will provide. While these examples target a largely consumer audience, our outsourced marketing services deal with similar triggers when creating content for our customers.
B2B Corporate Branding
In B2B sales and marketing, our day to day focuses less on sating desires and more about getting the job done. Doing less work, streamlining processes, and saving money are all features that people are looking for from B2B salespeople. Getting this message across means using direct language that captures the attention of our audience.
Time is valuable in the office – if you aren’t capturing the brand of your business quickly, you have lost a sale. Know your customers, respect their time, and tell them why your product will be meaningful to their business. This is the key to both our B2B sales and B2B marketing services.