Product Branding: Types of Branding and What Will Work
Types of Product Branding and What Will Work
Brand strategy comes in many styles. Want to know what branding ideas will work for your product branding. Let’s take a look.
If you are reading this article, you likely already understand, at least on some level, what branding is and how important a brand identity is for your company. Now the question becomes how to decide what branding ideas will best benefit your company or product.
The best place to start when thinking about your brand strategy is by asking yourself some questions to help you decipher your brand identity. Many questions can help you identify your company’s core values and what you want your brand message to portray to the audience.
What does your company stand for?
What uniquely makes your company awesome?
Do you also want your brand to have a visually identifiable look?
What three adjectives best describe your company?
What change do you want to make in your industry? Or, what problem do you solve?
Why did you start this business?
What do you do that none of your competitors do?
What makes you unique or special?
Asking yourself these questions identifies your goals and guides the direction of your marketing as a unique brand. It sounds simple, but often business owners struggle to answer these questions. More often, they feel unfulfilled and dissatisfied with the answers. If you feel like there’s something more to your company or some key element is missing, a brand strategist can help. You most assuredly are not alone in this problem.
You now understand the values behind your company and have a direction to take your brand identity. Great job! Don’t stop there. The second step is to decide on your brand type. This step is where we consider your audience and your industry. It’s not enough to see it from just your point of view. After all, it’s the customer’s point of view we need to reach in order to make the sale. Always consider your audience and their opinions and needs. If you haven’t been following your customer’s feedback, here’s where you start.
Who are you targeting? – A target audience is formed from the same factors as a target market but narrows to be more specific. It slims down the ideal consumer base, most likely to convert to sales through target audience research. If you do not know how to choose a target audience, we highly recommend asking a marketing consultant.
How do you want to communicate with your audience? – This strategy includes questions like, where are we most apt to reach your target audience? What avenues are they using to find your competitors? What time of day are they searching for you? Finally, what do you want your audience to walk away with after noticing you?
What’s on your customer’s mind? – This crucial piece of marketing strategy includes what your potential customers are looking for and what problem you solve for them. Decide how you do it better. Why should they care about your product or company?
Consider your industry. – What makes you unique in your industry?
You’re doing great! You have a key direction for your brand strategy and can address your customers’ needs. It’s time to discover which branding strategy style works best for you. Choosing a branding strategy style selects the strategic direction the marketing of your brand persona takes to control how the consumer views your brand. Here are the most common branding styles used to build a brand strategy.
Personal branding is for a singular person or a group of people that all share the same core values. Brand elements of product branding in this style include a brand story, design, and brand persona that focus on the individual’s identity, personality, or the singular core value of the individual or group. WWF the World Wildlife Federation would be an example of a group that uses a personal branding style to exhibit their singular core value of protecting the future of nature.
The product branding style makes a single product distinct and recognizable. Symbols, color, designs, and often font style play essential parts in this branding type to create a distinctive visual identity. For example, suppose Coca-Cola suddenly came in a blue can or bottle. In that case, you could easily mistake it for its top competitor Pepsi because it visually does not identify as a coke product. Product packaging and design play an integral part in brand loyalty and the trust the brand has built with its customers.
To use corporate branding, focus your attention on the core value of your business and a philosophy that your customers care deeply about. Marketers often use corporate branding to highlight the brand attributes that encompass a feeling the consumer has or is looking to gain. For instance, Wheaties breakfast cereal wants its customers to feel athletic and healthy by eating their products. Furthermore, marketing uses corporate branding for companies that support community ideals. In this way, they can focus on the feelings their community followers are seeking.
This particular branding persona focuses on customer service. It takes the needs of the customer and exceeds their expectations making their service the focus of their brand. Service branding is obviously great for the hospitality industry. Still, service branding can also take on other products and services that fulfill a customer’s need over all other things. For instance, Valvoline’s instant oil change centers on the value of the customer’s time, not the product and service they provide.
Also known as Co-branding or Group brands, this style connects companies together. Best used for companies that develop a smaller subdivision or companies that merge. A brand extension does not wish to rebrand your new product or company in cases like these. Instead, it piggybacks on the familiar brand your loyal customers already enjoy and trust. You provide the same look and feel for the new product and carry over all existing brand elements of the older and successful product. If involving a merger, you often carry over the stronger of the two brand identities. A brand extension strategy brings customer loyalty from one familiar product over to the new product or company without developing and maintaining a whole new brand strategy. This marketing strategy is common among the candy and soft drink companies that try new flavors or introduce a similar product.
Event branding focuses on the customer’s expectation of the particular event. Marketing specialists can use this specific branding style in and of itself or, if done correctly, in conjunction with another brand style as a temporary product branding for the event. When using alongside other techniques, you must continue to keep true to the core marketing strategy.
Many places or areas build their brand strategy around what benefits their geographic area offers its customers. These methods make the new customer aware of the surrounding environment and atmosphere that other cities or regions cannot provide. Likewise, it can also replace the personal brand for someone so connected and valued in the community that the geographic area is far more important than the person themself. Geographic branding is also excellent for places or buildings that have historical value.
This creative branding style focuses on design elements and buyer philosophy. A minimalistic approach to your design style immediately gives the potential customer a mental impression of no-frills needed; we’re the real thing. The minimalistic design philosophy embodies the idea that less design triggers a subconscious understanding that the product or service is pure or refined. For example, two of the top leading crystal gift shops are Swarovski Crystal and Simon Pearce. Both use minimalist branding to embrace the elite status of their crystals. Both company’s packaging designs keep a singular color box and a simple font style, nothing more.
The name usually explains this style effectively. It includes media resources such as newspapers, magazines, television stations, radio, and online media like webcasts and e-news. Media branding is upfront in providing precisely what style and stance the media will broadcast. Whether it is political, scientific, fashion, etc. The customer knows what to expect and relies on that media resource as an authentic and reputable source for that particular subject matter. Media branding holds the company’s reputation in high regard as an authority in their industry. So, if you’re going to talk fashion, you better know everything there is to know about fashion and stay up-to-date on the latest trends. If you’re going to talk politics, pick a party and report on that side of the issues at hand.
These two branding techniques often get confused or work in conjunction with other styles, making them further confusing. Online branding is not so much its own branding style as it is incorporating online elements into your current chosen branding style. Online branding includes online aspects like the company’s website design, social media platforms, blogs, email campaigns, online video, and other online content. On the other hand, E-Brands exist only in the virtual world. Marketers may sometimes consider this its own style because it has a core focus, as do all other branding styles. E-branding focuses on delivering a valued service or experience in the virtual environment only. Setting the virtual experience as its core value gives this style cause for a category of its own naming known as E-branding.
Product branding in a nutshell
We hope that this article helped you become far more familiar with branding and understanding the different elements. Choosing the correct brand elements that will work for your company is critical for the product branding to be successful. Remember, your brand identity represents your company’s core values. Your brand type considers your audience and industry. Finally, your branding strategy style is the direction your marketing and design take to relay your message to the target audience. All three elements are equally critical for achieving the desired outcome and reach needed for a successful brand awareness campaign.