This article was originally published in The Growth Masters Daily (thegrowthmasters.com) on April 9, 2011
Advertising and Branding –Two Sides of the Same Coin
David J Dunworth O.C.E.
Heads I win; tails I still win, but what’s the advantage of choosing one over the other?
Which comes first-the chicken or the egg? It’s much the same in business. Trying to balance the activities, especially if you are re-branding your entity, is a juggler’s nightmare.Entrepreneurs and emerging enterprises have very small staffs, and most start up ventures have the entrepreneur and maybe a spouse or partner. The day-to-day activities of the business make the process of developing the brand and handling the creative processes difficult to say the least. Both of these creative activities deserve all of the concentration and focus the stakeholders can invest into them, but which one is more important?
Everything from logos, market research, web site development, tag lines, the print process, graphics and copyrighting and trade marking leave little time for anything else, and trying to prioritize these tasks while running a business can be a challenge.
Take a moment to put yourself (if you aren’t already) in the shoes of a budding entrepreneur. What’s more important; getting all of the facets completed, or rolling out the new logo on stationary and business cards, or waiting until the new web site is completed? Should you handle one task at a time, or bundle everything for a high impact debut?
Tails – It’s Branding
The Branding camp states that the creative process begins with the brand, and the advertising is crafted from the graphic impact of the logo, what the brand stands for, the value proposition and it’s overall appeal.
By a reflective look at your existing brand (if re-branding), what stays and what needs to be redefined. This process is not a quick one, and takes multiple attempts at the creative process to develop a clear and succinct message through the whole brand’s impact. In that way advertising messages can be crafted to mirror the mission and vision of the brand itself.
Heads – It’s Advertising
Sometimes a brand’s audience can only be reached through a very narrow media channel. If so, it pays to keep that in mind from the beginning. If the message can only reach people through a round hole, it makes little sense to spend creative energy and marketing dollars exploring variations on square pegs. If you need to advertise exclusively in regional print media to reach your customers, do that! In many cases, it’s true that the medium is the message.
The Toss for Both
There will be a long list of ideas, strategies, concepts and statements that come from the process, and need to be documented for possible later use. Who knows, you may identify a product life extension idea that can be used down the road.
For more information, text “texticon” to 90210 David J Dunworth, CEO of TeXT-Icon Mobile Marketing Communications and also writes a blog for entrepreneurs and emerging enterprises. You can find him at: http://www.theovercaffeinatedentrepreneur.wordpress.com