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Branding vs Marketing: How Are They Different?

Let's set one thing straight — branding and marketing are two different concepts. In a nutshell, branding is all about your brand and marketing is about promoting your products and services to attract customers.

It can get confusing, and understandably so because the two overlap but branding and marketing are important tools that will help your business stand out.

Read on to know the difference between branding and marketing, and how they're both essential to your business' success.

What Is Branding?

You want people to associate your product or service with your brand, right? That is branding.

Branding is what you are as a business — It's how people experience and identify your brand, and used to differentiate your brand from the rest. Think of branding as your identity, personality, and how you want to be viewed.

There's a common misconception that branding is just about the colors of your website, logos, or even the aesthetic of your Instagram feed. Yes, brand colors and typography are important in characterizing your brand's identity but branding goes beyond and much deeper than just the visual aspect.

Think about what makes your brand unique and stand out, and how your want people to resonate with your brand. Remember, you want people to connect with your brand.

Branding can be identified as your:

  • Core Values - What does your business stand for? What values are important to your business?

  • Mission Statement - What do you want to achieve as a business? Why are you selling your product or service in the first place?

  • Brand Personality - How do you want people to perceive your brand? Are you playful or fun? What's your tone of voice?

Let's look at Glossier as an example. The beauty brand was founded under the belief that beauty isn't about what experts tell you to buy — in fact before Glossier was founded, there was Into The Gloss, a beauty blog for people to share beauty routines and products they love. The beauty brand is about creating products their customers want and not the other way around.

Simply put, branding answers the question what's your brand all about?

What Is Marketing?

Now that we've covered the basics of branding, let's move on to marketing.

So you've established your branding and you're ready to promote your products or services to people. How are you going to do that? Through marketing.

Marketing helps deliver your brand's message and promote your products or services to attract customers. There are different types of marketing but they all share a common goal of promoting your brand, its products or services. This includes social media marketing, content marketing, email marketing, influencer marketing, and other tactics.

Let's go back to Glossier again. The beauty brand believes everyone is an influencer, and this is reflected in their social media strategy. Glossier constantly taps into their followers and reposts UGC (user generated content), encouraging users to post content for a chance to be featured on their page.

You can use different methods for promotion. To best understand what marketing plan your business will need, it's important to ask yourself these questions:

  • What do you want to achieve? Do you want to increase brand awareness? Do you want to increase the number of visitors to your website?

  • Where is your target audience? Are they on social media? If so, which one/s?

  • What's your competitor up to? How are they selling their product or service? Do they offer regular discounts? How would you market your product or service differently?

So What Is The Difference Between Branding And Marketing?

We now know that branding is used to shape and define your brand's identity and marketing is used to promote your products or services to attract customers.

Marketing is great for capturing your customer's attention but branding is what keeps them interested in your brand. Marketing helps drive sales but branding is what makes them loyal. Marketing strategies change and evolve constantly while branding should remain consistent.

Having good branding is just as important as selling many products. Yes, an increase in sales and revenue will always be a good thing, but at the end of the day, brands need to remember that they're selling and communicating to people.

To Sum Things Up

Branding and marketing are two different concepts that go together. All in all, we recommend having a strong, consistent branding first and then marketing the right way to scale your business.

Now that you understand the difference between the two, it's time to use these tools to elevate your brand. Remember it's key to stay on brand and get your customers familiarized with your branding - that's the key element when marketing.

Take a look at some of our work below.

If you need help with branding/re-branding, or marketing (or even both!), we can help. Get in touch with us at for more information!


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