The history of branding can be traced all the way back to 2000 BC when farmers ‘branded’ their cattle so that they could easily be identified by other farmers. In a similar fashion, craftspeople would stamp or etch their names onto their product so that it could be distinguished from the products of their rivals by consumers. Although these practices still occur today in some countries, the concept of branding has morphed and broadened a great deal. These days, we associate branding with the development of corporate identity, the sale of products, and the promotion of services. Branding is immensely important to just about every company, politician, and influential person.
Generally speaking, there are four distinct kinds of brands. Within each of these categories, there are many more specialized styles of branding that this article is unfortunately not long enough to discuss. Here is a very brief guide to the four kinds of brands.
Not all brands are built around entire organizations. Personal brands are cultivated by (and for) people that are aiming to have some kind of role in public life. These people could be politicians, influencers, comedians, musicians, or just about any other type of person that needs to be recognized in order to find success. Personal brands are cultivated through a careful release of information and a considered approach toward personal output and appearances. These tactics were first developed by campaign managers working for major political candidates but have since been adopted in a huge variety of fields.
Corporate branding efforts are designed to promote and spread awareness of an organization as a whole. Almost every company makes a great deal of effort and spends a great deal of money on corporate branding. Corporate branding is essential in the conveyance of an organizational brand identity – something all companies strive to achieve. Corporate branding efforts can take many forms. Custom clothing of the kind made by anthembranding.com, public relations efforts, employee training, and advertising all play a part in corporate branding.
Product branding helps to position products for sale and improves their appeal to target audiences. Packaging is often used as a good example of a product branding medium. In recent years, companies have scrambled to use the packaging of their products to advertise the green credentials of their products and overall brand. Biodegradable and recyclable packaging helps to advertise the potential for a product to assuage the guilt felt by consumers procuring items they do want but don’t need.
Service branding is potentially less obvious in its application than the branding of more tangible products and corporations. In order to achieve consistent service branding, a company needs to establish strict standards for the provision of the service that they offer. They need to identify what consumers need from a service and strive to offer solutions in a highly quantized fashion. The training of operatives plays a large part in the development of a successful service brand.