A Harley Davidson tattoo is a common sight on the bodies of American bikers. The motorcycle manufacturer is famous for symbolizing the American way of life, a longing for open roads, and the spirit of rebellion.
Why do customers go the extra mile for these companies? One word—branding.
Strong branding establishes trust and customer loyalty. But how do you emulate the same for your business? Here’s your answer.
In the next five minutes, we’ll talk about each aspect of branding and its costs. This article will discuss:
- The definition of branding
- Why is branding important
- What to do to establish a strong branding
- The associated costs
- And lots more
Branding and its costs — the basics and the steps to take
What is branding?
Branding refers to the deliberate actions you take to establish your company’s image in your customer’s eyes. Branding is what impression your product or service leaves in the minds of your customers.
Strive to establish the following through your branding:
- Deliver a clear and succinct message
- Build an emotional connection with the audience
- Generate loyalty and goodwill
- Reaffirm your business credibility
- Establish yourself and your business as a dependable thought leader who addresses your customer’s issues with candor and panache.
- Motivate your potential customer to take the next step (aka buy from you)
Importance of branding
1. Branding develops brand awareness
What comes to your mind when you read these 3 sentences:
- The letters ‘A’ and ‘Z’ and a smile drawn underneath
- A place where you can buy (quite literally) everything
- Low prices, massive selection, and extraordinary convenience
Amazon, right? That’s the power of strong branding. Effective branding imprints your business into your customer’s minds.
You can achieve the same with visual elements such as an eye-catching logo and creating a narrative around your brand.
2. Branding increases customer trust and loyalty
Steve Jobs responded personally to many Apple customers. If you were an average customer, which company would you choose? A company whose CEO replies to you or one where the customer support team asks you to explain the problem everytime you call to follow-up?
You don’t have to reply to dozens of emails from customers. However, make sure your customers feel:
- You’re there to listen to their problems and take measures to solve the problems
- Your company cares about building a relationship with the customers rather than just focusing on sales and numbers
- Your business delivers what the business promises
3. Branding helps you promote your business better
Guessing what’s the importance of branding in marketing? Here’s the answer:
- A strong branding translates to more customers opting for your products or services over a less-recognizable company.
- A consistent brand voice helps customers to relate to the business’ values. Furthermore, a consistent brand voice tells customers how the business can benefit them.
- Effective branding that customers can relate to increases the word-of-mouth publicity of the brand.
Steps to take to establish a strong branding
1. Establish brand strategy
Simon Sinek, in his book Start With Why, claims, ‘people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.’ That ‘why’ is the foundation of your brand strategy.
Establishing a brand strategy is far more than creating a brand name and logo. Here are three questions to help you get started:
- What is the purpose of your business?
- What does your business stand for?
- What is the message you want to convey?
2. Build visual identity
- The ‘Just Do It’ slogan of Nike.
- The smiling A-Z element of Amazon.
- The hidden arrow of FedEx.
These logos — which are amazing brand-building examples — convey the value of each brand. Aim for the same with your brand’s visual identity.
Your brand’s visual identity includes every visual representation of your brand:
- Website design
- Social media graphics
3. Develop brand voice
Let’s try to decipher the following brand voices:
- Quality, confidence, and intimacy
- The American way of life, a longing for open roads, and the spirit of rebellion
- Convenience, affordability, and endless options
If you thought of Apple, Harley Davidson, and Amazon — in that order — then you’re right. That’s the importance of brand voice.
Go back to the brand strategy and vision and figure out at least three primary values that represent your business. Use these three values to develop the brand voice.
Here are three questions to get your creative juices flowing:
- What message are you sending to your customers?
- Why are you sending the message?
- How are you sending out the message?
1. Costs for brand visuals
The average cost for brand visuals ranges from $1,000 to $5,000. The items in brand visuals include:
- Website design
- Social media templates
- Flyer design
2. Costs for brand visuals and brand messaging
Digital branding agencies can charge from $2,500 to $30,000 for the task. The price range depends upon:
- The specific needs of the brand
- The expertise of the agency or the freelancer
- The offered timeline for the project
3. Costs for brand visuals, brand strategizing, and brand strategy
Expect to pay from $20,000 to over $70,000 for the complete package. At this stage, the creative branding agency or the freelancer will develop:
- A brand communication strategy
- Visual design assets
- Copies for website, logo, social media posts, and more
Branding and its costs — consistency wins
An effective branding emerges when design and psychology converge. And that takes time.
Now that you know the aspects of branding and its costs, the information will speed up your process. However, the process still can take years. Thus, be patient and play the long game.