Branding- It’s Not Just For Cattle

By: Mandy Cummings, WildRock Account Coordinator

Coca Cola.

What goes through your mind when you hear those two words? A mid-afternoon caffeine boost? The first time you took a cold sip on that hot summer day as a kid? Those adorable little polar bears that pop up during commercial breaks around the holidays? This unique mental association is branding, a crucial building block when marketing a business. From household names like Coke to your favorite local coffee shop downtown, a company’s brand goes far beyond a cash transaction – it creates a loyal following of customers and advocates.

Branding is the fundamental message or impression about a company’s products or services that breaks through the clutter and anchors itself in a customer’s memory. Looking at popular examples like Apple or Nike, brand value goes much deeper than the products they’re selling- it’s what they’re saying.

Leadership expert Simon Sinek states the point eloquently, “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it.”

At WildRock, we like to begin branding discussions with one (albeit loaded) question: What is your mission? Going back to our Coca Cola example, their brand’s mission is to refresh the world, to inspire moments of optimism and happiness, to create value and to make a difference.

Then, paired with visual & emotional tactics (think consistent design, tone and communication), we begin to see branding take form. Take a moment to watch a recent advertising campaign called the “Hello Happiness Photo Booth,” and suddenly that red can sitting in your fridge invokes a whole lot more than a refreshing beverage choice.

A values-based mission, a creative communications strategy, and just like that- a brand.

A brand concept starts once you decipher why you’re doing what you’re doing, and we want to know- what’s your “why”?  Find us on Facebook to join the discussion!