When people think of branding, what usually comes to mind is a logo from a big company, something often seen on clothing or in moments of product placement during a movie or TV show.
Even though logos and other visual imagery play an important role, branding goes much deeper than that. And it’s just as important for a small business or franchise as it is for a famous international company.
A recent article from Trade Journal talks about how emotional connections are at the core of successful branding. Branding communicates your most important values and qualities, and it inspires emotions in other people. You become associated with these feelings, both positive and negative.
While logos are a key way to connect with people quickly and help them remember your best qualities, branding more broadly involves every interaction you have with customers. Ask yourself how you make customers feel across these situations:
- When they first step into your store
- When they browse through your shelves
- As they interact with you and your employees
- When they eat or drink the items you’ve sold them
- Their reactions to the content you post on social media
Collectively, these experiences determine the kinds of emotions customers will associate with your brand. You can have a compelling, well-designed logo but still fail at branding if customers don’t consistently enjoy positive interactions with you. You can offer them the best selection of soft drinks, coffees, candies, and snack foods, but what will stick out in their mind is their encounter with an unhelpful sales clerk or a rude post they read on your Facebook page. Or the sight of a dead roach at your store.
For your branding efforts to succeed, make sure they’re built on positive experiences.