It’s said that branding is both an art and a science. If so, it’s a lot like music. Music engages us with powerful emotional triggers. Melodies, harmonies, timbres and rhythms combine in patterns that stimulate our ears, stir our hearts and challenge our intellects. We can’t explain our visceral responses when we hear something that moves us to tears or to dance. But we know how much we love it – how much we need it, even. And we know we want more.
At the same time, we can see the science in music. We can appreciate the mathematical patterns in primitive drumming and the rich point-counterpoint of Mozart’s String Quartet No. 11 in E-flat major. We can hear the similarities as well as the differences.
So, even as we sway to the music, even as we let it carry us away, we understand it doesn’t just happen. Someone has to compose it. Someone has to put in the time and do the work. Someone has to make sure all the pitches and patterns incorporate into a product that makes sense, that does the job.
As in music, brand-building requires a sensitivity to emotional reaction – and to intense study of branding’s history and best practices. Some brand builders have an innate sense of how their business should be perceived by the market. Steve Jobs is just one example of such a person. He never required an explanation of branding or marketing. In fact, it’s said he eschewed both terms. He believed those functions should be baked into the cake. They should infuse the company’s very culture – permeate every division. He just knew, in his core, that everything depended on design and on the way his end users interacted with his product.
But we can’t all be Steve Jobs. Even if we have his instincts about how our own businesses should be branded, we’d still do well to do our homework, listen to our customers, to our employees and to everyone else whose perceptions matter to our brand’s future success. We’d benefit from following tried-and-true guidelines and the industry’s latest innovations and best professional practices. When we combine our instincts (the art of branding) with proven business practices (the science of branding) we can create a brand that is truly symphonic in its scope and power. To build such a brand, one must engage in five separate activities, or movements. And those movements are Innovation, Strategy, Positioning, Identity and Communication. Boardwalk has just published a new white paper that explores the important contribution each makes to your branding efforts. It’s free and, if you own or manage one or more brand assets, it's well worth your time. Start the download process by clicking on the image above. Don’t miss it!
Best Branding Reads – Week of January 9, 2017
CES 2017: A Kodak Moment by Embracing Past With Eye to the Future
Kodak rises from the ashes. Glad to see it back but, really, how did this brand not die?
How Brands Are Capitalizing On Techno-Resistance
It’s not a bad idea to get off-screen every once in a while. Some brands are encouraging you to do so.
Rebooting the Xerox Brand: 5 Questions with VP Barbara Basney
Another iconic brand, Xerox, continues to evolve. Wish it luck in its new permutation
Disrupting Brand Positioning
Some great new ways to look at how your brand is positioned.
New Logo for Better Homes & Gardens
Underwhelmed at first but, then, this logo ought to be more classy than sexy. Good job, especially on the social media icon!
TrademarkVision uses image recognition to search for similar trademarks
This will make designers’ lives much, much better (or worse?)
Can I Trust Your Brand? The Fight For Survival in the Post-Fact Era
How can you connect with your market when it can't believe anything its being told?