A brand and a business aren’t the same thing. And that means that marketing either entity takes very different strategies. The projected outcomes and desired results that a brand has is different from that of a business. Here is the difference between a brand and a business, and how to market each effectively.
A brand is different from a business.
A brand is the image of a business, while the business itself includes the products or services that are being sold to consumers. This means that a brand identity is an intangible asset if a business.
A brand and a business are inherently linked to each other, and brand marketing is primarily dedicated to promoting the business linked to it. But a brand doesn’t try to sell products to customers, instead, it tries to build connections.
What is a Business?
A business is a corporate entity that sells products or services to customers. The main target of a business is to scale and grow by meeting and even surpassing projected sales targets.
A business handles various aspects of product creation, material procurement, sales, marketing of products or services, and all other aspects of business management.
To grow a business, a business owner needs to dedicatedly market their products are services to potential customers. Product reviews, customer testimonials, information on products and tutorials are some of the marketing material used by businesses.
A business can have under one umbrella, multiple products or services that are being sold. Look at Procter & Gamble. Under one name, they sell various products like Gillette blades, Duracell batteries etc. What needs to be considered here is that Procter & Gamble isn’t actually a business entity, but a brand entity.
Several businesses produce multiple products under the title of Procter & Gamble within a certain sector. To illustrate this even more, look at Johnson & Johnson. They are a brand that market various businesses within the healthcare sector. Coca Cola is another example.
Coca Cola is a brand, and a larger entity under whose umbrella multiple businesses operate. If any of these businesses fall apart, and they sometimes do, the brand itself isn’t always directly affected. But if the brand name gets affected, the businesses get affected as well.
What is a Brand?
A brand is the image of either one, or multiple businesses. Where multiple businesses are concerned, they all operate under the umbrella of one brand entity.
A brand primarily focuses on building connections with customers and telling the brand’s story. Brand narratives are designed to resonate with audiences. This happens as audiences that feel a connection with a brand are far more likely to purchase products from businesses that brand is affiliated with.
To that end, maintaining a positive brand image and a reputable brand identity is tantamount to a business’ success. A brand focuses on visual elements that help customers recognize brands as well.
These include logos, brand colours, taglines, leaflets, and all other marketing collaterals. A brand’s primary responsibility is to make the customer feel happy, and provide them with support through customer service whenever necessary.
A brand and a business always go hand in hand. The success of one entity reflects in the success of the other. But the primary point to note here is that the failure of a business doesn’t always affect the brand entity.
As long as the brand’s reputation is secure, another business can be started under the brand name.
Growing a Business and Growing a Brand
Since these entities work to secure different end goals and objectives, they take different paths to achieve their growth.
1. Sales vs Connections
To grow a business, you need to increase sales. Business marketing focuses on selling products or services to as many customers as possible.
A brand on the other hand, is designed to tell a story about the business. This story reflects the business’ mission and vision, and is designed to showcase the business in a positive light. At the beginning, a brand and a business are closely linked to each other.
As businesses scale and grow, the brand identity can start to become more important primarily because it’s more recognizable by consumers.
2. A Brand Identity is Permanent
When growing a brand, marketers need to be aware that a brand identity doesn’t go away. Even if a business fails because of a lack of sales or business disruptions, it’s still possible to start a new business.
The brand identity on the other hand, if tarnished, stays that way. It’s harder to build trust among consumers if that trust has in any way been broken before. To that end, brand marketers need to be far more careful in matching the cultural zeitgeist. They work to understand consumer behaviour and motivation, as well as what drives them to make purchases.
3. Brands and Businesses Grow Together
Although the techniques involved with growing a brand and a business are different in the approach each entity takes to find growth, their ultimate goal is still the same. Both the brand and the business want to boost sales, retain consumers, and scale overall business growth.
Neither entity can operate without the other. A brand is framing the narrative and story behind a business. And the business needs to adhere with the image being promoted to appear authentic in front of consumers.
Both entities target the same group of people – consumers. That’s why a brand and a business always go hand in hand.
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