A brand is the key differentiator that gives a company or organization its identity. In other words, the brand can be described as the personality of the business. As your business scales, grows, and succeeds, your brand strategy and approach to brand management must evolve too.

Building and maintaining a brand and brand identity require pro-activeness and vigilance. As an old adage in branding goes, “If you don’t manage your own brand, someone else will.” Even Warren Buffett, known for his shrewd and almost prophetic investment decisions, has built his investment philosophy based on the idea how effectively a brand is managed and its potential.

What is Brand Management?

Today’s consumers are more demanding and markets more crowded than ever before. Consumers liking your product or service at a point in time does not mean they will remain loyal and keep buying from you. There are plenty of examples to choose from where companies rested on their laurels alone, while new competitors quietly came in and took their customers and market share away by delivering better quality, value, and customer experience.

Managing your brand reputation, adapting your brand voice and messaging, and delivering consistent value is what brand management is all about. It is of utmost importance that a business stands out from the competition and ensures better recall in the minds of consumers who are becoming more and more conscious of being marketed to. Effective brand management, therefore, helps solidify competitive advantage, build reputation, and grow revenues over time.

Brand management is a continuous, long-term process that involves maintaining consistency around your brand and putting into practice your organization’s core values. And there are certain core elements that help define and structure how your brand communicates with its audiences. Let’s take a look at some of those elements.

1. Brand Identity

Accurately representing who you are as a brand is what your brand identity does. Brand identity is nothing but the visible elements of a brand, such as color, design, and logo that identify and distinguish the brand in consumers’ minds.

A thorough brand audit is of utmost importance. An in-depth study of the tangible brand elements like logos, taglines, etc. helps immensely in defining the brand’s design, messaging ethos, and communication guidelines.

2. Brand Position & Strategy

Identifying the target market and placing the brand accurately, while being mindful of the competition, defines good brand positioning. Building focused marketing strategies, campaigns and promotions helps maintain the position of the brand amongst the competition. The brand’s credibility and relevance creates a positive perception in the minds of the target audience and helps in the recall value. To maximize customer relevancy and establish competitive distinctiveness, an effective brand positioning strategy is a must.

3. Brand Messaging

A brand’s core message helps inspire, persuade, motivate, and ultimately make the audience buy your product. It conveys the underlying value proposition of your brand, or simply put, what consumers get out of it. It is very important to articulate an apt messaging for your brand, keeping your brand guidelines, target audience and competition in mind. Developing a strong core message conveys the value of your brand to the audience and helps them understand your brand better. A brand messaging that resonates with your audience and enables an emotional connect adds to the value of your brand.

4. Brand Amplification

Creating a brand identity, strategy and messaging is of no use if you cannot amplify it well. The success of a business is validated when its audience turns into paying customers. Promotional strategies to educate and encourage your target audience to convert into paying customers is of utmost importance. A well-defined communication plan across channels relevant to your brand should be penned down. Sharing information, establishing your position, differentiating your offerings, and increasing the demand in the market are the main goals of brand amplification.

A well-managed brand is, indeed, a successful one.

But strong brands aren’t built by marketing or product alone, but by leveraging your customers’ brand experience in your storytelling. It’s easy to overlook the impact of consistent, intelligent brand experiences — and brand management can help you provide this for your followers, customers, and brand advocates.