Few terms in business are used more than “branding” and “marketing” yet ironically, they are so often misused or misunderstood.

It seems like there are as many definitions of the term “branding” as there are brands. Branding is the work of a company to provide a distinctive identity to itself and the products it makes, so that they may be easily recognized and sought-after.

This brand identity takes a variety of forms, from naming, to creating a graphic identity (logo) to design (brand dress), to packaging (merchandising), to uniform wear, etc. Branding even considers, among other things, the nomenclature, the priorities, and the indefinable essence.

If something is “off-brand”, that means it does not agree or is inconsistent with the brand’s true identity, and must be avoided at all costs. The brand paradox is that the company doesn’t own the brand. The consumers of the brand do.

Marketing, on the other hand, is the work of a company to transfer their brand identity (and “ownership”) to the mind of the consumer. Consumer’s “think brand” and recognize the difference between branded and unbranded (commodity) products.

For practically every product category, consumers will maintain a short list of acceptable brand choices that reflect who they are, based in part on personal experience and consistent brand marketing.

Marketing creates and helps to maintain awareness, consideration, trial, repeat purchase, and loyalty. Marketing, in one form or another, must support all brands or they will cease life as a brand.

While marketing campaigns come and go, with some addressing immediate or temporary changes, branding and marketing go hand-in-hand and must be tended to regularly.

Business owners know intuitively that they need both branding and marketing to succeed, yet are often at a loss of how to apply these concepts effectively to make a difference on the bottom line.

What’s more, branding and marketing are often perceived to be too expensive and only the purview of multi-million or billion dollar brands like Coca-Cola or Nike. Nothing could be further from the truth.

At AMG, we know the difference between defining your brand and marketing it to grow your business, no matter how large or small it may be.

We know the latest techniques and strategies to effectively and efficiently reach your target customer with minimum wasted time and money.

And we know that a well-developed and differentiated brand supported by a cogent, well-executed marketing plan is not an expense, but a necessary investment in your business future.

Danziger, Friederichsen, and Ramey of The American Marketing Group can meet with you to discuss your business goals and aspirations. Sometimes, the issue can be a poorly defined or articulated brand.

Other times, the problem can be ineffective marketing choices or lack of a coherent strategy.

And in almost every case, clients are too close to the problem to identify the best solution. Maybe it’s time to seek guidance from someone who not only knows the difference, but who can make a difference for you.

AMG offers a free 30-minute telephone consultation to discuss your branding and marketing issues and how we can help.  Use the link below to connect.

Link text