The term digital branding is often used, but what actually is ‘digital branding’?
As a strategist and brand planner, I find the use of the term ‘digital branding’ curious. Do we use the term ‘TV branding’ or ‘radio branding’?
Digital marketing has emerged as a specialism over the last decade with its origins rooted in direct marketing. The increase in the number of personal devices and their use means brand marketers have many more ways of communicating directly and interactively with their target consumers or customers. Given this, it’s no surprise that branding concepts should be applied to digital media and technology to develop brands through interactions with consumers on their digital devices.
Digital branding definition: So, how do I see it? Here’s my perspective on “Digital Branding“:
“Digital channels and assets are used to communicate a brand’s positioning (or purpose) as part of multichannel brand communication or engagement programmes”.
So let’s rename ‘digital branding’ ‘digital communication’ and consider its role in the context of the business strategy and brand planning.
How does brand-building apply to you?
Do you have customers, employees and investors? Do you have competition? If yes, you need to think about your brand. In other words, you need to think about how these different stakeholders perceive your company. Why should they choose you over the competition? And if you think, the answer lies only in product quality and price, you are mistaken.
Branding in the Digital Age
Building a strong brand in the digital age is vital. Of course branding has always been vital, but when we consider the online environment and changing user behaviours, we can see the clear benefits of branding:
- Branding is a tool for developing and maintaining a competitive advantage. In the noisy world of digital media, staying competitive is even more of a daily challenge.
- Online users are more autonomous than they ever were. With information at their fingertips, users are spoiled for choice in terms of products and services. A well-defined brand is essential for distinguishing your product or service from the rest.
- Brands have less control over what is said about them online. Users have access to the opinions of other users, which heavily influence their purchase decisions.
- The online customer relationship rarely ends with a sale. Brand building in the digital environment should leverage this and convert one time customers into coveted brand loyalists.
- Say goodbye to the funnel model; today there are various touch points where users engage with brands, however branding ensures a consolidated message.
- In addition to paid and owned media, strong digital branding has the advantage of earned media – such as communities and brand advocates.
- Remember branding is not only about your product or service – it’s about your social engagement, customer services, sales process, your employees and everything in between – think about how digital has changed the above.
- Branding has always been about connectedness. Digital heightens the connectedness of brands, people and things.
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