Brand vs. Branding – What’s The Difference?

Brand, branding, brand identity, personal brand… all marketing buzzwords that you hear commonly knocked around, sometimes interchangeably. But, they are not all one in the same, so just what exactly is the difference? Here are the facts:

Brand

A brand is quite literally the product or service that your company is offering. A company’s brand is critically important to its stability. This is how your company will stand out in the marketplace. Perhaps it is a particular image or logo, or maybe it is the service itself, but over time your brand is what will make your business identifiable.

Before going to market, a company should take plenty of time to explore their brand identity carefully. What makes your service offering stand out? What can your product do that others cannot? Sometimes the products or services are the same or very similar to others already available in the marketplace, which just makes brand identity all the more important. This is why consumers will choose you over the competition.

When someone is referencing their personal brand, this is essentially how they are trying to make themselves stand out in the crowd. Perhaps they are trying to advance a career in a particular field, or perhaps their personal brand is, in fact, the product or service they are offering. This would make sense for authors or those seeking to trademark intellectual content.

Brands should be coveted, which is why companies often trademark their name or the symbol associated with their brand. Businesses also fail because the due diligence of exploring, identifying and protecting their brand has not been done.

New business logo design for Paintbase; a high-end nail salon franchise. Check out our our branding case study.

Branding

Once all of the legwork is complete, and a brand has been identified, the creative process of making that brand stand out begins. Branding is what lets companies establish a presence and differentiate themselves in the marketplace. A company’s branding can take several different physical forms, including but not limited to logos, fonts, business cards, signage, or advertising campaigns all launched with a consistent theme.

Branding Consistency = Brand Success

Not making the time and investment in branding is a critical misstep. Companies often believe that they can save money by doing this themselves or using inexpensive online services that know nothing about their brands. While there may be short-term gains for the budget, this will surely be a long-term loss. It is worth the investment to have a branding package created that will make your company stand out.

Are you starting a new company? Is your brand already established, but having a bit of an identity crisis? 90 Degree Design helps brands stand out. Request a proposal today.