Ultimate guide to branding

I’m starting a new blog series today called ‘the ultimate guide to branding’ (I was thinking about calling it branding for dummies, but then I thought – lets aim a little higher eh? :-)). In this series I’ll share with you what I’ve learnt over 20 years working in graphic design, advertising, PR and marketing. It won’t have dull and boring scientific definitions, I’m going to keep it real to your work world and mine. I’ll dive deeper (hopefully) in an engaging way that will help you understand how to utilise it effectively in what you do in your world.

Why am I going to write about branding? Does the internet and blog world even need yet another post about branding? Probably not, but branding is an overused word by many who don’t fully understand what a brand really is, means or how to fully leverage the brand they have. Many people talk and write about brands from a ‘what I reckon’ standpoint rather than ‘what I’ve done’ informed opinion. (The internet is FULL of so-called experienced marketers and brand guru’s who claim to have the answers, but the thing I don’t get is when you visit their blog or website is the very average design which clearly makes a mockery of their ‘expertise’.)

Enough of my rant.

In the western world brands are simply everywhere.We live in a brand saturated world where EVERY company and not for profit is vying for our attention towards their brand. Brands whisper and sometimes shout to us 24/7. They are simply impossible to escape. Whether you are aware or not almost every minute of every day you will interact with a brand in one way or another. I’m not just talking about seeing a commercial or a logo on a side of a building, I’m talking about how you experience or interact with a product, service or program. For example, I am typing this post on an Apple Mac Pro, in a Chrome browser, in a WordPress blog platform, using Standard Theme.

Now I haven’t even taken my eyes off my monitor. If I just look up away from my monitor I can see a Cisco IP Phone, my iPhone, a Samsung flat screen monitor, a box of Chupa Chups (Shhhsssh don’t tell the kids), I can also see The Age newspaper and an old ticket to the MCG to see Hawthorn vs Geelong Cats.

Oh and I’ve just had a drink of my Dilmah tea.

Brands are everywhere. Some local, some global.

Whether you are a blogger, business or not for profit organisation, you all are competing against other brands in your niche. You are all competing against other brands for people’s valuable time and attention. What sets you apart from your competition?  What is it about your brand that cuts through the noise and clutter? Why should anyone give you a second look?

What is your favourite brand? Got branding questions? Can you guess which brands make up the montage at the top of this post? Comment below!

Watch out for more posts coming up about branding in the series this week!