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What is Brand Marketing and how can you crush it?

Brand Marketing is the cool kid of the marketing and advertising world. It gets to be creative and smart, tell stories and form relationships. But here’s a tip – it’s not your strategy in a headline. The classic marketing trope “Excuse me, your strategy’s showing” is code for lazy campaign work. Be cleverer than that, because your audience is cleverer than you may think and will spot it a mile away. We break down exactly what it is, its benefits and how to do it well. 

Brand Marketing is – a pretty generic term, no?

Surely every piece of communication you run ultimately markets your brand? It does, and that’s important. But pure Brand Marketing is messaging that focuses on your brand’s story and personality rather than the straight up functional features of the product or service your brand actually delivers, (aka Product Marketing).

Brand Marketing is – emotional, damn it!

When you run a brand marketing campaign, you’re communicating your brand strategy in a creative and human way. By pitching your brand on an emotional level and elevating it from the detail of its rational attributes, you’re in with a chance to hit a nerve and form a deeper connection with your customers.

Brand Marketing is – fun!

Remember why you got into marketing. Was it to work on product marketing comms day in day out? Didn’t think so. We know there’s a need to advertise the price of ‘firm ripe bananas’ and the precise ingredients of a moisturizer, but come on, we all want to be a part of higher level brand marketing campaigns. We want the Superbowl moment, the policy changing activism campaign, the beautifully filmed car spot that gives you goosebumps or the irreverent chocolate bar billboard that gives makes everyone LOL.

Brand Marketing is – sometimes a headache

Due to its high status in the comms hierarchy, brand marketing attracts a lot of pre-launch eyeballs. This translates to internal campaign management with many moving parts. Budgets, briefs, lead times, research documents, various versions of creative concepts, proofing, legal compliance and approvals all need to align and often have multiple stakeholders in and outside your organization.

Whilst this is firmly in the ‘not-fun’ part of Brand Marketing, life can be made much easier by using a cloud based Marketing Operations software tool. IntelligenceBank’s DAM and workflow management system handles everything from brand management to briefing, scheduling, budgets, creative and document inventory, mark ups, approvals, and compliance to launch all under one roof.

Benefits of Brand Marketing

Builds equity: The financial value of a brand cannot be understated. It lives as an intangible asset on the company’s bottom line.

Builds sales down the line: Goodwill breeds repeat purchase and loyalty that can be entrenched in families for generations.

Builds brand recall: Over time, brands establish a voice and become immediately recognizable – often without customers even seeing a logo. This makes it a lot easier for a media buy to hit its KPIs.

Builds the base for tactical marketing: Your Brand Marketing campaign works beyond the creative on the page, screen or airwaves – it is a springboard that informs other necessary activity such as product marketing, promotions and event sponsorships.

Builds character: Relatable brands have more sway. When all practical markers between your brand and the competition are the same, the choice boils down to personality.

Keys to Brand Marketing Success, (aka crushing it)

Get your Product right
The most fundamental part of the marketing mix is to have an available product that fills a need at a suitable price point. Make sure your offering has the goods to back up any benefit you claim.

Have a solid understanding of your Brand Story
Where does your brand currently sit?
Why does it sit there?
Where do you want it to sit?
How do you get it to sit there?

Know your Competitors
Understand your strategy options. Identify gaps and opportunities.

Be close to your Target Audience
Along with all the quantitative data you hold, conduct qualitative research to get inside their heads. What are their pain points? Pre-test creative directions, draw out responses and hunt for nuggets of gold. The non-sequitur response often unlocks a fresh direction.

Keep it Simple
When it comes to branding, less is more. You want your brand to be easily recognizable and easy to understand. Don’t overexplain. Jim Gaffigan doesn’t go around telling people he’s funny. He just is funny.

Go Big
Big ideas are a must in a crowded market – which most are these days. They’re disruptive, get people talking, contribute to earned media and make more memorable connections to your brand.

Call in the experts
External creative agencies are the best place to look at your brand with fresh eyes. They are wired for innovation and will often have a lot of industry and cultural knowledge that may not quite be mainstream.

Make sure Channels are in tune
Tailor your media buy to match the tone of your campaign messaging.

Stay Consistent
Once you’ve developed your branding strategy, it’s important to stick with it. Consistency over time is key when it comes to building trust and credibility. And, to achieve consistency, easily accessible Master Briefs and Brand Guidelines are a must.

Give your band a home
As much as Brand Marketing lives metaphorically in your customer’s minds, the ‘intelligence’ used to create these campaigns needs to live somewhere a little more tangible! With multiple creative assets, schedules, supporting documentation and approval trails, it’s easy for campaign elements to become fragmented and hard to share.

At IntelligenceBank, our whole ‘reason to be’ is to save time and headaches by giving brands their own home base. We’ve developed a beautifully designed, easy to navigate, secure space to manage brand marketing work flow – in one place – from start to finish.

Our BrandHub is the heart of this home. It’s a place where you’ll find your Brand Story, Brand Guidelines, Master Briefs, Galleries of best practice work – it even has its own mailbox. An online brand portal like BrandHub ensures accuracy and consistency so all the slog involved with creating effective memorable campaigns does not need to be revisited.

NAB BrandHub

Brand Marketing combined with an online brand portal are a one-two combination knockout punch to differentiate your brand from your competitors. Done well and consistently you’ll carve out a little rent-free space to live in the minds of your customers that’ll put a smile on their face and yours.

Contact us for a demo and see why over 500 brands and 800,000+ users in 55 countries rely on us to support their Brand Marketing.