The 5 disciplines of branding

Category Date 30. September 2019 Author
Die 5 Disziplinen der Markenbildung

There are a few stubborn mistakes in branding that we encounter time and again. Therefore, I would like to correct three common mistakes at the beginning of this article:

  • A logo is not a brand
  • A brand is not an identity
  • A brand is not a product either

Now we know what a brand is not. Not much added value for a post called “The 5 Disciplines of Branding”. Nevertheless, it was a very good place to clear up the mistakes here. Before we go into the 5 disciplines of branding, now that we know what a brand is not, let’s ask a question:

What exactly is a brand?

The brand is the gut feeling that someone has in relation to your product, offer or business. It is a gut feeling because the brand is individually defined by people. The brand is not defined by the company itself, markets or the public. We talk about a gut feeling because people are emotional and intuitive.

Your brand isn’t what you say it is. It’s what they say it is


Why is branding so important?

People today have too many choices and too little time. Most offers hardly differ in quality and function. We tend to make our purchase decisions on trust.

Trust always arises when customer expectations are met and exceeded.

The 5 disciplines of branding

The Brand Gap von Marty Neumeier

1. Differentiation

Our brain works like a filter to protect us from too much or useless information and impressions.

The best way to differentiate yourself on the market is therefore focusing and specialization. That ensures a unique selling point. You stand out? Then you probably will not be filtered out that fast.

A little self-test for you. Answer these three simple questions:

  • Who are you?
  • What do you do?
  • Why is that relevant?

If that presents you with a challenge, then maybe you still lack some focus.

2. Networks

You can`t build a house all by yourself, at least not when it should be good. You need specialists, suppliers, helpers, guides and companions. This also applies to the company.

As a brand agency, we rely on a highly specialized network of experts to provide you with the best and most sustainable results.

Have you read our post on Brand Agency?

3. Innovation

Be innovative and creative. Creativity gives your brand support and unique position in the market.

Creativity is a difficult topic for many companies. That’s because of the nature of the thing. The left hemisphere is responsible for structures and order – a topic in which companies are usually very well positioned. For creativity, however, the right brain is responsible. It’s a different way of thinking.

A good starting point is your company name. He should meet the requirements below

  • Distinctiveness
  • shortness
  • appropriateness
  • Simple spelling and pronunciation
  • sympathy
  • expandability
  • protectability

Of course, a great company name is not enough – it is the starting point. But a good name deserves great graphics. You can find more about this in our Branding and Services section.

4. Verification

The old communication model in marketing was a monologue. The sender has delivered his message to the recipient. Whether with a commercial, an advertisement or other print media and mailings. Finished.

Thanks to the abundance of communication channels and media, we are in dialogue today. Delivery of the message to the recipient is no longer the endpoint. An exchange arises, a dialogue and the recipient wants to be actively involved.

The interaction with the customer has enormous potential and expectations.

Whether we really reach the customer, we can check with a few tests. For example, we can use the SWAP test to check the effectiveness of your icon. The hand test works similarly. Cover the logo on a display. Will the brand still be clear? A slightly more comprehensive test option is the field test with prototypes.

5. Cultivate

Does your company’s behavior match the image of your brand? A living brand has patterns of behavior. A brand is like a human. You can change your clothes without changing your character.

Only when a company lives up to its values, it creates an authentic brand. A gut feeling that the customer relies on. A brand he trusts.

I hope you liked the article “The 5 Disciplines of Branding”. This post is based on the ideas and concepts of Marty Neumeier and his fantastic book “The Brand Gap” A summary of the book as a PDF can be found here.