Every day we are confronted with countless brands on various channels, new images and messages are constantly pouring in. Every brand tries to attract our attention. It is well known that the attention span of us humans has decreased significantly due to the consumption of digital media:
Only a few moments decide whether we turn to a social media article or a blog post or a message. Our attention span has dropped from 12 seconds in 2000 to 8 seconds, less than that of a goldfish (9 seconds).
If you want to communicate digitally, you should attach great importance to branding. It is not for nothing that branding is regarded as an essential component of modern PR, especially digital communication.
Branding is a process that aims at what feelings and associations people have with our brand. What do they say about us? Like PR, branding also tries to control what image a company, a product or a person has. The first step is to gain clarity about the core of a brand and to express this knowledge in visual elements such as logos, colours and fonts and non-visual elements such as mood and feeling, personality and writing voice.
Well-made branding can help digital communication tremendously. I have filtered out 8 reasons why digital communication is not possible without branding.
Branding builds the brand
A brand must be clear before it can be communicated and marketed. Therefore, it is first of all necessary to build a brand with branding. This is not only important for companies and organisations, but can also be important for individual products and personalities who want to develop a personal brand.
Even if you run a blog today, you should think about branding in order not to get lost in the mass of blogs. If the branding is clear, PR can communicate the brand more easily and carry its messages out into the world via its own channels or via press work, influencer relations or cooperations.
Branding creates trust
If the messages, stories, feelings and visual elements are always clear and easy to associate with a brand and are repeated again and again, users immediately know who they are from and what they get.
This consistency and clarity creates long-term trust. And we want to build trust in a brand, a good reputation and a positive image with PR. Branding also plays a role in PR here, because a trustworthy company is much more likely to be reported on and it is much easier to get publicity.
Branding creates a positive brand image
Branding and PR work together on the image of a company. A good brand image creates positive associations in people’s minds. Branding defines the messages that originate from the core of the brand. It controls the narrative of the brand story and thus provides a framework for the image.
PR is image management, which involves the dissemination of these selected and intentional messages and information. Through digital channels, we also have the power to create a professional presence that contributes to the brand image.
Branding defines a uniform aesthetic appearance
We humans are visually very receptive, especially in social media communication. Visual elements can help to draw people’s attention to our posts, and the trend is even towards visual content replacing the written word. Without images, snaps and emojis, we hardly communicate any more.
Pictures evoke emotions and desires, but they can also be used to convey information (Stephanie Kowalski’s very descriptive article on this topic can be found on basicthinking.de). Branding defines a uniform aesthetic appearance, so that every single image, every video and every graphic pays off in the entire brand communication.
Branding appeals to heart and feelings
We all know that we humans feel more and more attracted to other people than to the company itself. Branding gives companies personality. Brands have a heart and come across as more human than pure businesses. Brand values and brand stories create emotions and a connection. This is one of the decisive factors that people trust a brand, have it in positive memory and ultimately become customers or at least carry on the positive thought of the brand.
Branding delivers the stories
Many companies, especially many small businesses and the self-employed, do not know what stories to tell. What content should they post on their blog or social media channels? With which stories can they approach the media? Having clarity about one’s own brand story helps immensely here. Your own brand story always provides an answer to the question why a company does what it does.
We already know from Simon Sinek (“Start with why”) that people attach enormous importance to the meaning, the why behind a brand. People connect through these stories, not through the mere functionality of a product or a company. Branding delivers these stories that we carry out into the world.