What is a digital brand?
Before we start creating a digital brand, it is important to understand what a brand is. The meaning of the word brand has changed a lot over the years.
What is a brand?
A couple of hundred years ago, a brand was something people used to mark cattle, horses and other animals that they owned – it was usually applied by heating a metal implement with a pattern, letters or numbers to the unfortunate animal.
In the early to mid 20th Century, a brand was a name and logo of a company. By the late 20th Century a brand became a more absctract concept – it became the impression that people have of your company – and it was formed by past images, experiences, stories and memories of the people in your market.
A couple of definitions I find helpful when thinking about what your brand means
A brand is who people think you are when they aren’t looking
Note: people includes your customers, prospects, colleagues, competitors – anyone who could interact with your company or products
A brand is the set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another. If the consumer (whether it’s a business, a buyer, a voter or a donor) doesn’t pay a premium, make a selection or spread the word, then no brand value exists for that consumer.
These two definitions of brand complement each other.
The reason I like Seth’s definition is he concentrates on the question of value. If your brand has no value to the consumer, then your product is a commodity – you effectively don’t have a brand.
On the other hand, brands are unavoidable – you have a brand whether you like it or not. There are plenty of people who argue we should think beyond brands, or despise personal branding – but this ignores the fact that people will form brand impressions whether you want them too or now.
Branding is the conscious and unconscious efforts and effects that create your brand. It includes your business name, logo, signage, slogans and other marketing efforts, as well as the unconscious impacts of your brand on your market.
What is a digital Brand?
A digital brand is what people see, hear, feel and think about in connection with your name or business online.
Digital branding is the deliberate process of creating consistently positive, appealing brand images and messages