A brand is a name, term, design, symbol or other feature that distinguishes one seller's product from those of others. Brands are used in business, marketing, and advertising. Initially, livestock branding was adopted to differentiate one person's cattle from another's by means of a distinctive symbol burned into the animal's skin with a hot branding iron.

“Brand is not a product, that's for sure, it's not one item. It's an idea, it's a theory, it's a meaning, it's how you carry yourself. It's aspirational, it's inspirational.”  – Kevin Plank –

The designer’s role is to create one of the most important aspects of the brand—the logo or brand identity system. A logo can’t make a bad product or company better, but a well-designed identity will help position a product or company to realize its full potential.

Brand identity builds awareness and customer loyalty. A company that invests in a creating a professional brand identity gives its management, sales agents, and employees a great tool to inspire team spirit internally and to connect with its customers in the marketplace. A professional brand identity becomes the face of a company or organization and is often the first connection between the brand and its target audience.

A beautiful black edit of my Macbook Pro.
Photo by Tomáš Stanislavský / Unsplash

In accounting, a brand defined as an intangible asset is often the most valuable asset on a corporation's balance sheet. Brand owners manage their brands carefully to create shareholder value, and brand valuation is an important management technique that ascribes a money value to a brand, and allows marketing investment to be managed (e.g.: prioritized across a portfolio of brands) to maximize shareholder value. Although only acquired brands appear on a company's balance sheet, the notion of putting a value on a brand forces marketing leaders to be focused on long term stewardship of the brand and managing for value.

The word "brand" is often used as a metonym referring to the company that is strongly identified with a brand.

Marque or make are often used to denote a brand of motor vehicle, which may be distinguished from a car model. A concept brand is a brand that is associated with an abstract concept, like breast cancer awareness or environmentalism, rather than a specific product, service, or business. A commodity brand is a brand associated with a commodity.

Brand Elements

  • Name: the word or words used to identify a company, product, service, or concept.
  • Logo: the visual trademark that identifies a brand.
  • Tagline or catchphrase: "The Quicker Picker Upper" is associated with Bounty paper towels.
  • Graphics: the "dynamic ribbon" is a trademarked part of Coca-Cola's brand.
  • Colors: Owens-Corning is the only brand of fiberglass insulation that can be pink.

Brand Communication

Brand communication is important in ensuring brand success in the business world and refers to how a business transmits its brand message, characteristics and attributes to their consumers. One method of brand communication, which can be exploited by companies, is electronic word of mouth (eWOM). EWoM is a relatively new approach identified to communicate with consumers, one popular method of eWOM is social networking sites (SNSs) e.g. twitter.

This study found that consumers classed their relationship with a brand as closer, if that brand was active on a social media site i.e. Twitter. It was further found that the more consumers 'retweeted' and communicated with a brand, the more they trusted the brand. Thus suggesting that a company should look to employ a social media campaign to gain consumer trust and loyalty as well as in the pursuit of communicating their brand message. McKee (2014) also looked into brand communication and stated that when communicating a brand, a company should look to simplify its message as this will lead to more value being portrayed as well as an increased chance of the brand being recalled and recognised by their target consumers. When communicating a brand, In 2012, Riefler identified that, if the company in question, is a global organisation or have future global aims they should look to employ a method of communication which is globally appealing to their consumers and choose a method of communication with will be internationally understood.

One aspect a company can do this is when choosing a product or service's brand name, as this name will need to be suitable for the market place that it aims to enter. It is important that if the company wishes to pursue global business, the company name chosen will need to be suitable in different cultures and not cause offensive or be misunderstood. It has also been found that when communicating a brand a company needs to be aware that they must not just visually communicate their brand message and should take advantage of portraying their message through multi-sensory information. Anon, (2007) suggests that other senses, apart from vision, need to be targeted when trying to communicate a brand with consumers. For example, a jingle or background music can have a positive effect on brand recognition, purchasing behaviour and brand recall. Therefore, when looking to communicate a brand with chosen consumers, a company should investigate a channel of communication, which is most suitable for their short term and long term aims and should choose a method of communication which is most likely to be adhered to by their chosen consumers. {Source}