What is brand marketing?
Brand marketing refers to the branch of marketing that deals with marketing strategies that help build a reputation and public image for a company or its products. Brand marketers establish and grow relationships between businesses (brands) and their target audience or consumers by promoting the entirety of the brand rather than highlighting individual products or services the business sells. In this approach, the products and services support the brand promise as proof points.
To achieve that, the brand marketer will employ a variation of marketing strategies, consumer insights, and
What does a brand marketer do?
Brand marketers use a variety of channels and tactics to create and nurture relationships between businesses and consumers. These efforts include (but are not limited to)
- Developing a distinct brand identity
- Creating campaigns that build brand awareness
- Managing customer relationships
- Analyzing consumer feedback
- Implementing loyalty programs
- Exploring new marketing channels
Brand marketers must understand how their strategies fit into their organization's larger strategic framework while staying on top of emerging trends. They will also use multiple channels to achieve their goals: from social media marketing to video ads, banner ads, email campaigns, influencer marketing, and more. The ultimate goal is to increase brand recognition and leave a lasting impression on the target audience.
In other words, a brand strategist will take your customers from having to research who you are and what you do to knowing your brand, trusting it, and becoming emotionally connected with it. Nobody researches Coca-Cola, Apple, or even Patagonia because they've built brands so strong it's impossible to not know what they do and what they stand for -- even if you're not a customer (yet/ anymore.)
Benefits of brand marketing
Brand marketing is a long-term game, not a short-term hack. While small, tactical, well-chosen actions can help build a brand, it won't happen overnight. The best brands in the world were built over years (and sometimes even decades) of consistent, thoughtful work.
Brand marketing isn't a quick fix, but all the hard work makes it worth it. Investing in your brand can help you:
- Achieve higher customer loyalty (a die-hard Apple fan will stay an Apple fan forever)
- Increased demand for products and services (people are drawn to brands that tell a story)
- Stronger relationships with customers (branding feels like a personal relationship)
- Better marketing results across the board (brand marketing can help your SEO, PPC, social media marketing, content marketing, and email marketing -- all simultaneously)
- Helps worth-of-mouth marketing (the easiest way to reach potential new customers)
- Lower price sensitivity (as people are more willing to pay more for brand names)
- Increased employee loyalty and efficient recruitment efforts (as many are happier to work for bigger, more recognizable brands)
How much does a brand expert cost?
The cost of a brand expert depends on your specific marketing communications and branding needs (e.g., if you need a logo design, images, messaging, to build a brand voice, etc.), as well as the expertise and experience of the branding specialist you hire. Generally, branding experts will provide services for anything between $25 and $1,000 an hour.
Top 9 skills every brand expert needs to have
Not all brand experts are the same, but if you're looking for someone who's perfect for your business, make sure they have the following skills:
Your brand marketer needs to be creative. Even if they don't build the creative assets themselves, your brand specialist needs to understand how to search and find the best ideas for your business. Furthermore, your branding specialist should also know how to speak the language of your creatives, so they're always on the same page.
Being a good brand manager is about more than just creativity. The best brand specialists can take a step back, look at the bigger picture, analyze the data, and make adjustments accordingly. This takes great analytical skills and a good dose of knowing how to balance the creative side of branding and the business-driven one.
An eye for detail
In branding, details matter more than almost anything else. Your brand specialist needs to understand the importance of having a unified message across your brand visuals and copy, from your website to your emails to your social media content.
Branding is all about communication. Your brand expert should also know how to communicate internally efficiently and effectively, to ensure the success of their marketing efforts.
Furthermore, your branding expert should be adept in marketing communications as well. They should know how to communicate your brand's message and story effectively, both at an internal level and an external one.
Even if they don't lead an actual team, your brand marketer should still know how to lead different branding projects. They should motivate and encourage people to accept their ideas and visions and influence stakeholders with their branding strategies.
Your brand expert needs to be obsessed with your customer. This is the only way to develop a brand that speaks to those most likely to buy from your business. As such, your brand marketer should know how to interview customers, how to extract qualitative data from surveys and reviews, and how to pull everything together in a cohesive brand strategy.
Branding isn't a bed of roses -- like everything else in marketing, it comes with unique challenges. A good brand marketer can overcome these challenges with a problem-solving mindset that helps them see a learning opportunity in every bump in the road.
Not all brand marketers have a business degree, and that's OK. Still, your brand specialist needs to understand how businesses work and how to make branding work for your business -- and for your potential customers too. To achieve that, they need in-depth business know-how, like how to identify opportunities, how to manage timelines and budgets, and how to optimize your branding strategy for maximum efficiency.
General marketing skills
Branding doesn't work in a vacuum -- it's part of the marketing mix and it's closely related to other marketing disciplines. That's why your brand expert should also understand the basics of SEO, content marketing, email marketing, and analytics. Your marketer needs to communicate and collaborate with all these members of your marketing team to ensure a cohesive message, a solid marketing plan, as well as the specific channels and formats your communications should have to match your branding efforts.
Understanding human psychology
A good brand marketer knows how to translate consumer insights into stories and marketing campaigns that attract people in your target market, build an emotional connection with them, and make them feel like they're part of your story. Brand marketing initiatives are all about understanding the nature of what makes your target audience tick (and buy.)
Your brand marketing expert also needs to be good at project management. They need to know how to collaborate internally, build creative briefs that encapsulate your message, manage external agencies, and ensure the editorial calendar is on point. These are a lot of things to juggle, so staying organized and on top of everything is key to thriving.
How to hire the perfect freelance brand marketer
Not sure how to hire the perfect freelance brand marketer? Here are some quick ideas you can use:
Post on job boards
Job boards are one of the most popular ways to hire someone. Basically, you put together a job description, you publish it on a job board (like Indeed, for example), and then sift through applications using your internal process. The downside to this approach is that you may get a lot of irrelevant or less-than-perfect applications.
Post on social media
Posting your job on social media is a relatively easy way to tap into your network and see if someone suitable applies. Same as with job boards, however, sifting through the messages and applications can be time and energy-consuming.
Ask for referrals
If you want a quick way to hire someone who's already worked with someone you know, all you need to do is ask. When you hire through referrals, you can be certain that the candidate is well-suited for the role and has a solid track record.
Hire with Mayple
Mayple can match you with a vetted expert in a matter of days. We only work with digital marketing experts who can prove their track record of success in specific industries, so you can rest assured that hiring a brand marketer specialist with Mayple is an easy and efficient way to find the perfect candidate.