What is Brand Management?
Close your eyes and imagine the most popular brands that come to mind. Apple, Nike, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Google. Those brands are not just associated with one product, but a culture. Apple has a tremendously loyal following. Coca-Cola is known for its advertising and promotion of sharing and coming together. When someone asks you a question, what do you say? “Google it.” Marketing is not the only reason these brands are thriving. They are successful because they understand the importance of brand management. Simply put, a brand is the most valuable asset a company has.
What is a Brand?
To fully understand brand management, we must first learn about what a brand is and means. If your company is a person, your brand is your personality. Your brand is created out of your purpose, vision, mission, values, and strategic objectives.
The success of a brand takes a team effort from all departments. Brand managers, marketing teams, and public relations teams need to collaborate to send out a consistent brand message. Since 2020 has thrown a curveball at many companies and their branding efforts, our article on the 3 Trends affecting PR Messaging in 2021 can shed some light on how to focus your efforts this year.
Your brand sets you apart from market competitors, it can increase demand for your products or services, and most of all, it creates deep customer connections and loyalty.
Brands Build Connections
A company’s brand isn’t a singular product or service but how consumers perceive a company. Customers become loyal to a brand that they feel connected to for one reason or another. It can be a connection that brings them nostalgia, i.e., how a particular laundry detergent smells that brings them back to when they were young, or that they have had successful outcomes with certain products or services created by a company.
When a customer feels a connection and trust for a brand, they will continue to buy that product or service, recommend that brand, and feel a sense of loyalty to that brand. It will become part of their daily lives and even help to define them in a certain way. Just ask someone, “Are you Apple or Android?”
Why Brand Management?
Now that we understand what a brand is, you can better grasp what brand management does. In simple terms, brand management aims to build customers’ perceptions of your brand in a positive light that will eventually convert them to loyal customers.
When done correctly, brand management can:
- Increase value so that you can increase prices.
- Increase sales.
- Build customer loyalty and create advocates through that loyalty.
- Position your brand at the top of the market.
For brand management to be effective, a brand manager must be tuned into the brand’s vision, mission, and values. They will build the personality of the brand using unique brand strategies. The key factors of brand management are separated into tangible and intangible elements.
The tangible elements of brand management are the elements you can see, touch, read, hear, etc. These elements are a collaboration between brand management and marketing to give your brand a unique and distinct look.
Tangible elements include:
- Social Media
- Promotional items and mixed branding strategies
- The product or service itself
While the tangible elements showcase the brand’s identity or look, the intangible elements showcase the brand’s values and mission. Intangible elements are how you measure your brand management efforts.
Intangible elements include:
- Brand awareness
- Brand loyalty
- Brand equity
- Brand Reputation
- Brand Recognition
These elements are called into question when a brand makes a sizable mistake, known as a scandal in the industry. This is why a brand manager is necessary because they can assess a situation that calls into question a brands’ ideals and create a strategic plan to place that brand back into its consumers’ good graces.
The Importance of a Brand Manager
Once a brand is developed and instilled in a customer’s hearts and minds, a company needs to maintain that brand’s image. This is where a brand manager is necessary. A brand manager’s primary focus is to maintain a brand’s image while creating fresh and innovative ways to keep that brand relevant in the market while staying aligned with that brands’ values.
Many small businesses may not need an entire brand department, but they can hire brand management or pr firms to keep their image aligned. At the PR Boutique, we can help businesses build and manage their brand by creating a unique brand and marketing strategy to help you stand out in your industry.
We are considered the top Houston PR firm and the leading Austin PR firm because of our dedication and care to bring out every clients’ vision and mission. As a company, creating brand awareness and customer loyalty is crucial, and we want to help you succeed. As brand managers, we know the importance of keeping your brand at the top and in a positive light in your consumers’ minds.