What is branding: concepts and best practices for 2021

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Do you know what branding is? This type of digital marketing strategy is widely used by big brands with a specific objective: to win the hearts and minds of consumers. It sounds like something from a romantic comedy movie, but it’s real.

And believe me, with the right actions your brand can cause butterflies in the stomach and conscious and unconscious sensations that are crucial when the customer chooses your service and/or product over your competitor. In this post, we are going to help you in this matter with the following topics:

What is branding?

Branding is a set of actions and strategies that help transform your brand into something desirable and positive in consumers’ minds. For this, it is essential that brand management is aligned with the purpose, positioning and vision and values ​​of the company.

Right now, take a few seconds and think about your favourite food brand. You’ll probably remember the taste, the colours on the packaging, the advertisements you’ve seen and the feeling you get when you eat or drink food with this label. That’s what branding is all about: awakening emotions that connect you to that brand.

In any brand management, all advertising and positioning campaigns are planned in advance. From the logo, the visual identity, the colour chart, the tone of voice, the actors and actresses of the advertisements and even digital marketing on social networks. Everything is designed to convey the brand’s personality and more efficiently reach the target audience.

So if you want your business to grow smart and have long-lasting functionality and fall out of favor, branding is essential. In addition, this type of strategy also extends to other areas, such as personal branding, employer branding, co-branding.

We’ll explain each one better to you below!

Personal branding

Personal branding is the management of your personal brand. Basically, it corresponds to what makes you unique and remembered by other people, whether because of a technical speciality, interpersonal positioning, authority and credibility in the market or another factor that makes you have a value and a positioning of a personal brand.

One of the key points for this, according to Arthur Bender, author of the book Personal Branding: building your personal brand (2009), is having confidence and asking yourself: where do I want to go? “If you don’t know where you want to go, you could end up anywhere,” he says.

According to the author, each professional represents a product in the market, in a certain corridor, with a certain function and an estimated value. However, you can simply be more of the same and swim with the tide or choose your path and generate your own value or, better, your personal branding.

Employer branding

In the case of employer branding, which, translated into Portuguese, means “employer brand”, what counts is the set of techniques, actions, tools and strategies that will generate a positive perception of your company in the labour market. In other words, it is the company of anyone’s dreams, with the best benefits, humane treatment, with a clear social and environmental awareness or several other facts that influence this ranking.

Co-branding

Co-branding corresponds to the sharing of authority and market value between companies or public figures. This is a type of strategic alliance that associates a single product or service with multiple brands. This partnership can be made between two or more brands that unite in a joint action purpose, taking advantage of the qualities and competencies of each one.

For example, a biscuit brand joins up with a chocolate company to create a different flavour and with the logo of both stamped on the packaging. Therefore, the target audience of both, who can relate indirectly, will strengthen sales because it is a food that they approve and use. This strategy brings benefits to both parties, increases visibility in the market and attracts more consumers.

However, it must be done with good planning and study, in addition to having common affinities, so that the partnership does not generate conflicting images and has the opposite effect of what co-branding proposes.

Branding is a great strategy for digital marketing success | Photo: Freepik

Branding is a great strategy for digital marketing success

What is a brand?

Basically, a brand is the symbolic effect of a company or individual in a certain area of ​​professional and social performance. As you can see, it’s not necessarily a specific endeavour, but also a person, like an actor, a singer or a football player. The important thing is that the brand must actually mark something. That is, building an identity that makes it recognized by a community.

In this way, the logo, the tone of voice, the colour chart, the vision, the values, the purposes and several other things form the brand of a company or individual. According to Aldo Wander’s man, author of the book What if you were a brand? (2015), “any initiative around ideas, talents, skills, passion or leadership can benefit from the customized construction of an identity” and, soon, become a brand.

Therefore, personal branding can be your great professional ally. After all, many brands were built and prospered because of the image of their founders, such as Walt Disney, Ralph Lauren, Giorgio Armani, Chanel and many others. “Once you have established your brand and a sustainable business model, your initiative takes on a life of its own,” writes Aldo Wander’s man.

Now that you know what branding is – personal branding, employer branding and co-branding – and what branding is, how about discovering good branding practices for 2021, especially in digital marketing? We’ll explain everything to you below. Come on!

Good branding practices for 2021

In addition to branding, digital marketing is essential for those who want to be successful on the internet, social networks and other online platforms. For this reason, we have separated below 5 good branding and digital marketing practices for 2021. Check it out!

1. Know what your target audience wants

The first step, and the most basic for any area, is to know where your target audience is located online and what they want to consume, what are their pains or motivations. This way, you will know where, how and when to act in branding and digital marketing. To do this, do market research, ask for feedback from your consumers and run several tests to find out which strategies work best for your niche. E-mail can be your great ally in this task.

2. Marketing actions on social media

Did you know that in 2020 alone the TikTok app had more than 2 billion downloads in Brazil? That’s right, believe me! The growth of this social network, as well as Instagram’s Reels had a huge peak during the quarantine and promises to remain strong in 2021. Therefore, bet on this type of action and build your branding on these platforms.

3. Virtual characters

The third step in good digital marketing and branding practices for 2021 is to bet on voice assistants or virtual characters, such as “Lu”, the digital assistant of the famous Magazine Luiza store chain. According to Google Trends, interest in voice assistants grew 47% in Brazil. For example, interest in Amazon’s Alexa has grown considerably over previous years.

4. Humanized and committed brands

The public is increasingly giving preference to humanized brands that have a clear and effective commitment to some cause or aspect of society, whether humanitarian, environmental or political, among others.

It is now crucial to empathize and treat others as people, in fact, and not as merchandise or “just” customers and employees. Having a humanized, sensitive, efficient and proactive service is highly valued nowadays.

And, I say more, being a humanized and committed company can be a tie-breaker between your brand and the competition. So, if you don’t have that clear yet, it’s time to pursue this good branding practice in 2021.

5. Investment in digital marketing

As we’ve already mentioned, digital marketing is essential for a brand’s branding to be successful. Therefore, investing in this area is essential.

In fact, more than investing, it pays to learn and master these features once and for all. Therefore, we recommend two HeroSpark tools to help you:

  • SparkFunnels
  • SparkStart.

The SparkFunnels is a funnels creation tool selling high conversion, intuitive, super-fast (your sales funnel is ready in 5 minutes “), dynamic and real results.

In the case of SparkStart, it is an acceleration program (TOTALLY FREE) that teaches you the strategies and knowledge necessary to create a profitable digital product, besides offering the ideal tool to implement everything and start sales without complications.

Finally, what did you think of our content about branding and branding, in addition to personal branding, employer branding, co-branding?

HeroSpark is the most complete solution in Latin America for those who want to create high-impact businesses, as it is the most complete digital entrepreneurship platform that unites those who want to teach with those who want to learn.