How to build and maintain a corporate brand is still a question for businesses, whether large, medium or small, whether it is a software outsourcing business, or a manufacturing enterprise. products, then protecting the brand for the business is still a concern not only of leaders but also of employees for a long time. Recently, brand has become a popular keyword. Everywhere people are encouraged to build a brand. But what exactly is a brand? Where to start branding, with whom, how... are still open questions. This article outlines a few basic concepts of branding, the function of corporate branding, and branding.
1. Brand concept
“Brand is the brand that is branded”
"Signs" are material elements that can be perceived by the senses: through visual-visual, sound-hearing, smell-smell, taste-taste, skin-touch sense. In other words, "signs" are external signs of a thing, "loving" are sharing, exchange, sympathy or inner feelings evoked when people encounter signs of recognition. know things. Thus, branding will include two activities: Building a system of identity signs; Communicate so that these signs are loved by society. This is just a fun explanation, but from a legal perspective, a trademark is understood as follows:
“Brand is, first of all, a term used a lot in marketing; is the image of a production or business establishment (hereinafter referred to as an enterprise) or the image of a type or group of goods or services; is a set of signs to distinguish the goods and services of one enterprise from those of other enterprises. Signs can be letters, numbers, drawings, images, color representations, sounds, etc., or a combination of those elements. First of all, it is the image of goods (products) or businesses. However, just an image with a name and logo is not enough; Behind it needs to be the quality of goods and services, the way the business behaves with customers, the community, the real effects and benefits for consumers due to the goods and services it brings... Only then will the brand go deep into the mind of the customer.”
2. The function of the brand
2.1. Brand recognition and differentiation
This is a very characteristic and important function of the brand, the brand awareness is an important factor not only for consumers but also for businesses in managing and operating their activities. Through branding, consumers and manufacturers can easily distinguish the goods of one business from another. Branding also plays an important role in segmenting a business's market. Different branded goods will deliver different messages based on certain signs in order to meet consumer needs and attract the attention of different sets of customers. When goods are richer and more diverse, the distinguishing function becomes more important. Any signs that make it difficult to distinguish will reduce prestige and hinder the development of the brand. In fact, taking advantage of the confusion of the signs that make up the brand, many businesses with bad intentions have creating signs that closely resemble well-known brands to try to create confusion among consumers.
Information and instructions:
The informational and instructive function of the brand is reflected in the fact that through images, language or other signs, consumers can partially recognize the use value and utility of the goods. . The information about the place of production, the class of the goods as well as the conditions of consumption ... are also partly expressed through the brand. In general, the information that the brand brings is always very rich and diverse. Therefore, brands need to be clear, specific and recognizable to create success for a brand. For example: Framgia is an IT company, when mentioning Framgia, customers will think of products as IT products.
– Create perception and trust:
This function is the consumer's perception of the difference, superiority or peace of mind, comfort, trust when consuming goods and services when choosing that brand (For example: Japanese motorcycles, Sony sound systems, Heineken beer, Microsoft software...). Talking about perception is talking about a certain impression of goods and services in the mind of consumers. Consumer perception is not natural, it is formed synthetically from brand elements such as colors, names, logos, sounds, slogans, and consumer experiences. use. The same goods or services, but the consumer's perception may be different, depending on the message or the situation of receiving information, or depending on the user's experience. An accepted, classy brand will create a trust in customers and customers will be loyal to that brand and service. The quality of goods and services is a decisive factor in customer loyalty, but a brand is an extremely important driving force to keep customers staying with those goods and services and is a destination for consumers to choose from. use trust. This function is only shown when the brand has been accepted in the market.
The brand carries with it a present and potential value. That value is most evident when transferring the brand. Brand is considered an intangible and very valuable asset of a business. The value of the brand is difficult to determine, but thanks to the advantages that the brand brings, goods and services will be sold more, even at a higher price, easier to penetrate the market. Brand does not come naturally, it is created with many different investments and costs, which create the value of the brand. The profits and potential that the business has from the popularity of the brand will determine the financial value of the brand. Every year, Business week magazine gives a ranking of about 100 top brands in the world with their estimated value. Example 2002: Coca-Cola: $69.6 billion; Microsoft: 64 billion; IBM: 51 billion; GE: 41 billion; Intel: 30.8 billion; Nokia: 29.9 billion; Disney: 29.2 billion; MC. Donald: 26.3 billion; Mercedes: 21 billion… In Vietnam, the P/S brand was acquired by Elida Company for 5 million USD (while the value of tangible assets is just over 1 million USD).
2.2. Economic benefits brought by the brand:
- Increase sale revenue. - Tighten customer loyalty. – Increase profits and increase income for businesses. - Expand and maintain the market. - Enhance labor attraction and employment. – Increase production and sales of goods. Increase the value of the product because consumers have to pay to buy the prestige of the product. – Raw materials to produce products increase, which leads to economic growth in general. - Attracting investment
3. Branding for businesses
Building a brand is important for any business. A strong brand will bring success to the business and vice versa, a weak brand will lead to the death of the business. A successful brand must be built on the core values and identity of the business. When customers connect emotionally with a brand, it is easier for them to share their values and beliefs about the brand with others – this is an important factor in increasing sales and creating brand identity. . When customers have become "followers" of the brand, no matter how big discounts or promotions are offered by competitors, customers will still choose your brand.
Here are 10 suggestions for effective branding for your business:
3.1. Define your brand
Review the products and services of your business, determine the market share that you hold and understand the needs and desires of customers both emotionally and intellectually. Brand personality is the key to your business's success, making it easy for your customers to recognize your brand and setting it apart from your competitors.
3.2. “Humanize” your brand
See the brand as a person – a character that creates trust and brings useful values to customers. Need to associate the brand image with a person or mascot whose personality is similar to the brand personality that you want to build. This way will make customers excited every time they see the image of the character and they will never forget your brand. This method requires the brand maker to be creative to make a difference for his character
3.3. List your strengths
Finding and "polishing" the strengths of the business is extremely important. It will be difficult for you to leave a mark in the hearts of customers if you do not have a strong point that stands out from your competitors. Those strengths can be as simple as: fast delivery, home warranty, phone consultation, etc.
3.4. Build long-term relationships with customers
Always give customers the values as expected of them, so that customers' trust with the new brand becomes sustainable. When you have "intrinsic" customers in hand, your brand will be introduced to their friends, family, and acquaintances.
3.5. Provide attractive information about products and services
Providing information about products and services of a business to customers is something that everyone does, but not everyone does well. Information should be provided in a clear, precise and targeted way to the interests and concerns of the customer. Do not "stuff" too much information in the brochure about the product or service. Just providing the essential information to the customer is enough.
3.6. Building a new and unique brand image
Images that are too familiar and boring will make customers quickly forget about you. So give customers your new and unique images, so that new customers will be impressed with your brand. You can also use unrealistic, shocking images to promote your brand
3.7. Don't try to follow the branding of the "big guys"
Make your own difference instead of following the way of others. Each business has its own characteristics, so the way to build a brand will also be different. Even applying the branding of the most successful brand to your business will not make it famous. You need to create your own direction, not "touching" with anyone, but being different, not different.
3.8. Be creative, bold and reckless
A great brand is like an elephant, although big and strong, it is less flexible. Therefore, a large brand often reacts slowly to new customer needs. This is the Achilles heel that you can exploit, be bold, bold in your branding
3.9. Brand building right in the sales stage
Promotion is a powerful tool in the branding process. However, do not overdo discounts and discounts in your sales activities because this will inadvertently reduce the value of your brand. Instead of reducing the price, add value to the customer, if you provide a product, you can add another product, and if you provide a service, you can provide some additional services for free.
3.10. Customer satisfaction is an important asset
A business that increases 5% loyal customers thanks to their satisfaction with products and services, profits will increase by about 25 - 85%.
There is no advertising method that is highly effective with low cost as word of mouth information of customers and consumers. The choice of consumers is based on the product's reputation, reputation and previous shopping experience of the referrer. Therefore, making customers satisfied is an important "asset" for small and medium enterprises in their efforts to improve their competitiveness. Business reality shows that, a business that increases 5% loyal customers thanks to their satisfaction with products and services, the profit will increase by about 25 - 85%.
The key point here is to build a business owner's personal brand - which is also the brand of the business. When building a branding strategy for small and medium-sized businesses, focus on building a personal brand. There is a note when transforming the personal brand of the business owner and the business brand: personal branding activities must be continuously linked to the corporate image. And each individual must be ready for the transition from personal brand to corporate brand to form a collective brand value.
Brand plays a very important role, not only for products, services, existence and development of businesses but also for the national economy. Pay attention to branding right in the daily work, from day one!