5 Important Reasons Why Branding Should Matter to You

Most of you are probably rolling your eyes at this article. We all know that branding matters – “my brand is my promise to the customer” – and all that palaver. We admit that this sounds woefully fluffy; but there are some tangible pros to having a thoughtfully considered branding strategy.

5 reasons branding should matter to you

Firstly, let’s get one thing straight: your brand is not just a logo. It’s not your business card, a catchy slogan or an interesting colour palette. Branding is all of the visual, textual and ideological tools used to convey your message in the marketplace. Consider Ferrari, which is consistently ranked in Forbes’ annual Top 10 Most Powerful Brands ListFerrari’s brand says: “be the best; be the elite.” The prancing horse is merely an embodiment of that ideal: a way for wealthy middle-aged men to get the message. For the record, Ferrari’s brand value is currently estimated to be $4.7 billion.

“So if branding is more than just looks, what can it do for my business?”, we hear you ask. We’ve compiled a list of some key benefits for your browsing pleasure:

1. Branding Has Economic Value

While the term ‘intellectual property’ often stirs great controversy, it’s clear that ideas have real monetary value. A recent study by Griffith University found that the ASX100 collectively own over $280 billion in brand-related IP. Want more figures? Let’s examine Woolworths, which was recently crowned Australia’s most valuable brand. Last year, it had a staggering brand equity of $10.823 billion. When we compare this against their last company valuation of $39.02 billion, it suggests that the brand itself was worth an amazing 21.71% of the total corporate equity. These numbers drive home the point: brand value is a real thing and it’s worth your time.

2. Branding is a Robust Asset

Rates fluctuate, technology evolves, corporations rise and fall; but strong brands may persevere through all these changes. Branding is arguably more sustainable than tangible assets are, because the former isn’t necessarily vulnerable to physical calamity. Consider for example a much beloved brand: Twinings. These humble tea merchants have endured for more than 300 years. They’ve survived countless revolutions, two world wars, the great depression and the GFC. What’s the secret to their longevity? It’s simple: a genuine connection. Coca-Cola CEO Muhtar Kent said it well: “during difficult economic times, consumers gravitate toward the brands they know, the brands they love and trust.”

3. Branding Gives You a Competitive Edge

Well, this one probably didn’t come as any great surprise to you, but it’s an obvious point because it’s a solid one. Whether you’re a B2B or a B2C; your organisation is competing for someone’s attention and money. Put simply: a well-executed brand can make you stand out. Many entrepreneurs begin their journey not with a product, but with a genuine heartfelt idea. Perhaps you want to build bridges, end world poverty, or create the world’s most delicious pizza. Whatever your goal may be, buyers simply won’t get it unless you can convey yourself through strategic branding. Furthermore, people like to know whom they are giving their cash to, so branding will also help to give your clients peace of mind.

4. Branding Sets Expectations

Remember Lance Armstrong? The champion who fell from grace ever so spectacularly? This is a perfect example of how branding can both giveth and taketh away. On one hand, a good one can attract admiration, loyalty and funding. But when Armstrong failed to live up to public expectations during his doping scandal, his achievements and sponsorships were immediately protracted. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t heard of Armstrong doing anything lately (besides trying to salvage his tattered name). The point is: branding is less about the way you describe yourself and more about how others perceive you. Saying that branding doesn’t matter is like saying your reputation doesn’t matter. All businesses rely on referral-based marketing to some degree, so you can see why a branding strategy is essential.

5. Branding Gives Focus

It isn’t just about winning hearts and minds. It’s about running your business efficiently. Whether you like it or not, you do already have a brand. Every sales pitch or business proposal you’ve made came down to three main points: who we are; what we do; and why you need us. This is branding at its core. Now the question is: how developed and cohesive is your brand? If you’re labouring to sell yourself again and again, then you need a properly defined brand – something that you can refer to quickly and easily. It will articulate your goals and values so that you can stay focused no matter what distractions may arise. Moreover, having a brand will really clarify to your employees how they should act, what is expected of them and ways they can help to promote your organisation. Ultimately, it’s about streamlining your efforts to maximise profitability.

Questions or Comments? Please get in touch with the editor: ros@rldstrategic.com 

About the Editor

Ros Lawson is a branding strategist with over 25 years experience in the game. Her client list includes some of Australia’s most recognised brands; including: Ansell, DCWC, L’Oreal, Mobil and Visy – to name a few. She is known for her multi-level thinking style, astute business acumen and friendly demeanour.