We have been talking about how most people find “brand” to be a very abstract concept if not all together foreign. So, the purpose of this mini blog series is to show you what I mean when I call myself a branding photographer & coach.
I see that there are three main types of brands: Personal Brands, Corporate Brands, and what I am calling Authentic Business Brands. Each of these types of brands serve a specific purpose and service a specific audience. So far we have gone deep with the purpose of Personal Branding and what it means to have a strong personal brand. In this post we will take a look at Corporate Branding.
Every single successful business on the planet has a distinct and more than likely effective corporate brand. For these large businesses their brand is a combination of probably hundreds of carefully planned elements. We will focus on a few key factors: their colors & decor, their services & value, and finally their promise to their customers. Starbucks for example is about as dependable a brand as they come. You always know what you’re going to get. Their logo and decor are consistent and haven’t changed much in the last several decades always welcoming, and recognizable. They keep their menu simple & affordable, and their services evolve with the times (think comfy chairs for reading, free internet and tables for working & studying among other elements). Finally, their promise of being a “third place” is something they deliver on all day everyday. Starbucks truly services their customers and keeps their corporate promise. Their brand is so well developed and so effective for many reasons but probably the most significant is that they don’t FEEL like a corporation; they FEEL like my neighborhood coffee shop where I am known, and where my opinion matters.
Everyone knows their coffee is simply NOT the best; it literally can’t be because they have to make too much of it too quickly all the time. But here’s the kicker: it doesn’t matter! We still love them because we know we can depend on them & Starbucks meets our needs (for community, a mobile office space, a meeting place, or simply caffeine).
While Personal Branding, and Authentic Business Branding are different in important ways, we can all learn a little something from Corporate Brands: They all make a promise and work hard to deliver on it.
What are some other large corporations or businesses that do such a good job at being consistent with their brand and delivering on their promises that we are loyal customers? Also, what are some ways we can apply these principles to our Personal and Authentic Business Brands? Tell me your thoughts in the comments below.