There are only a few principles for efficient branding. Follow them and you will be successful. In the long term. At the center of branding and brand development is the core message “Better to be first than better.” This motto has been confirmed time and time again through branding policy. Whoever is the first in the mind of the customer has already won. Imitators are always the second, who then have to argue that they are either cheaper or better or both. However, when customers have a choice, they would rather purchase the market leader, the original, or from the leading specialist. Only there do the customer’s perception of quality, experience, and recognition converge.
However, one thing has to be quite clearly differentiated: The brand, not the advertising itself, must be first in the mind of the customer. Emotional advertising does not automatically create an emotional brand. Only a clear marketing and positioning strategy and a mature, coherent branding personality derived from the strategy lay the cornerstone for permanent and profitable advertising in the sense of B2B branding. And then one creative idea — which divides the market for one’s benefit, to which one remains loyal, and which provides a clear image of the brand in the minds of the customers for the long term — is enough. This can happen when you create a new category, divide the market into black and white, and reposition the competition. Then brand success becomes market success.
Whoever wants to exhaust the full potential of one’s B2B brand has to neutralize and reposition the competition in the minds of one’s customers. “Everything for everyone” is the antithesis of success where branding and brand management are concerned. A strategic branding process integrated into the brand-oriented management of the company helps to a large degree to expand on the advantage of one’s own brand in sales markets, labor markets, and opinion markets.
At the agency, the strategic branding process is a holistic approach that contributes successfully to B2B brand development and to long-term branding.
- In the first phase, brand analysis takes center stage. Brand analysis delivers the basis, paints a picture of the brand environment, and shows the current brand performance. The results of analysis give future-oriented starting points for optimizing the brand and for future brand development.
- Phase two is dedicated to the brand strategy. The brand strategy is initially about divergence or evolution. The brand strategy focuses and divides the market for the benefit of one’s own brand. Brand positioning, brand essence, and brand values are the key words. What matters is occupying an available position in the marketplace over the long run and consistently developing and expanding this position for the brand.
- In phase three, brand creation, the basis for the sensory presence of the B2B brand is created. This gives the brand a soul and defines the forms of how the brand is experienced. The brand thus becomes authentic and the perceived quality becomes the key to brand success and market success as well.
- Phase four is concentrated on long-term brand development. The B2B brand conquers the market with endurance and patience by relying on the right brand and positioning strategy and reaching both the minds and hearts of people. In combination with ongoing brand controlling, understanding and behavior of the brand grow. This knowledge flows into the ongoing measures, thus permanently securing an increase in brand value and brand performance.
The branding work at the agency is oriented to this strategic branding process.
Digitalization, and with it, the Internet, are a constantly growing cosmos and therefore never complete. Digital brand success lies in building up a structure that can follow this development flexibly without losing the inner values. The digital branding process at the agency is in three phases, whereby it is more a permanent cycle the deeper one dives in.
- The “digital checkup” is at the start. Onsite and offsite are always equally viewed. Analysis, tests, and workshops ultimately show the current performance of the digital brand, giving starting points for optimization.
- The next step is about the “digital content architecture“. Consulting, strategy, and concept establish the aims of digital branding and describe the path of the digital evolution.
- The phase of “digital evolution” revolves around creation, implementation, and digital brand management. Ongoing checkups, monitoring, and trend observation lead to further ongoing development as regards content and technology. New digital and multimedial possibilities make adjustments in the strategy necessary again and again. Nevertheless, the brand essence is not allowed to be forgotten or ignored. That is the big challenge in digital branding.