Let’s begin with a simple definition of branding.
Branding is the art of becoming knowable, likable, and trustable. Branding is an art because it deals with the interplay between strategy [logic] and creativity [emotion]. Too much strategy and too little creativity exude a cold bureaucratic image. Too much creativity and too little strategy send disjointed and confusing messages. The trick is to maintain balance.
Unfortunately, three forces team up to keep the scales wobbling.
In today’s always-on, always available business world, we suffer from the plagues of time famine, overchoice, and short attention spans. In order to mollify the relentless stress spawned by these three plagues, marketing professionals will often jump into creating marketing tactics and vehicles (website, brochures, logos, brochures, tweets, posts, etc.) prematurely—before investing in good branding principles. In light of the three plagues, the urge to leap ahead with creating tangible stuff is particularly tempting. Don’t just sit there, do something!
But there’s good news: good branding cuts through the visual noise pollution. Good branding clearly demonstrates to the world: we value the important over the urgent. It simplifies and distills choice-making down to its essence. The pay-off? Reducing someone’s stress.