How do you define a brand or a business? Business owners have been saying that it is important to “build your brand”, to “build your business.” It seems like people use the word “brand” and “business” interchangeably, but the fact is they are quite different.

A Business:

Business refers to the organization that markets or produces products or services. According to Chris Kocek for, “A business is an operational entity within an industry, and it stays within its realm of business.”

A Brand, a bigger picture of business: 

Brand refers to the image and “personality” a company applies to its products. A brand is what happens when that business grows and becomes so large that it actually serves a greater purpose; stretching farther than its industry. Usually, the brand portrays the story behind the business, it creates the emotional bond between the business and consumers. There are many elements that are used to develop a brand, including advertising, customer service, social responsibility, reputation, and visuals. All of these elements work together to create a brand.

Is every business a brand?

Every business has the potential to be a brand, but not every business understands the differences and realizes its potential. One thing to keep in mind is that a business doesn’t turn into a brand overnight. It takes time to build a relationship with your customers, and it needs a lot of dedication to establish an identity in every industry. It takes work to transform a business into a brand. You want to show your customers that you really care about them and earn their trust. 

Brand values v.s. Products

A brand communicates its values through the excellence of its products and the excellent service it provides. They are inseparable. Some companies have high-quality products, but they do not align with the brand values. Do they still look appealing to you? Probably not. In fact, Americans are increasingly willing to take actions that reflect their beliefs, including which companies they buy from and what they purchase. Almost three-quarters (72%) of U.S. consumers believe it is “more important than ever” to buy from companies that reflect their values.

Are you building a Business or building a Brand?

Building a business essentially means expanding your landscape and offering goods and services to your customers. When you are building a brand, you are creating a positive and impressive brand image for your business. You should ask yourself when branding your business. What makes consumers pick us over other competitors? The first thing you want to do is to differentiate yourself from competitors and deliver an incredible customer experience. Figuring out the unique selling proposition for your brand is the key component. A unique selling proposition (USP) is the marketing strategy of informing customers about how one's own brand or product is superior to its competitors. 

How do I develop my brand? Here’s 5 important steps to successful branding:

1. Identify your target audience

Do you know who your target audience is? Focusing on a clear target audience will potentially lead to higher growth and profit for your company. 

2. Identify brand position

Determine your company’s brand positioning within the market. Identify the differences between your company and other competitors. 

3. Come up with your brand promise

A brand promise is a value or experience a company's customers can expect to receive every single time they interact with that company. It is important to consider what your employees, and customers expect from you in every aspect. 

4. Develop brand identity

Brand identity is the visible elements of a brand, such as a name, color, design, and logo, that identify and distinguish the brand in consumers' minds. It’s a way to communicate and symbolize your brand. For instance, Apple uses the apple icon as their logo, the design is very simple but memorable. 

5. Create Brand story

A brand story is a mixture of feelings and the fact of what kind of products and services your brand offers. In addition to that, it needs to be emotionally inspiring.

Why transform your business into a brand? 

You want to brand your business because it helps your business make a memorable impression on consumers, and it gives your customers an idea of what to expect from you. Proper branding will help your business by distinguishing yourself from competitors and clarifying what it is you offer that makes you the better choice.

So now you know the difference, what do you think about your company? Is it still a business or a brand? Is your business creating an emotional connection with your customers?  If not, we are here to help find out the answer for you. 

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