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A mere decade ago, brand building was essentially created on the pillars of packaging and advertising. It involved one-way dialogues and communications. Many feel that those were simpler and easier days. However, some brands were launched only to be left winking in the dark. The company, marketing department and employees who launched the brand were the only ones who knew about it. Having a business, product or brand means having to build brand awareness. If not, it’s like you’re winking in the dark. You know you’re doing it, but no one else does!

It used to be that ”working it” meant advertising and gaining “share of voice”. But times have changed and now share of voice is only one aspect of the fragmented yet cohesive puzzle of brand building. It’s never been more important for brands to excel in the new and exciting environments we have today. Although, it doesn’t mean that there is no longer a need for traditional media advertising, quite the contrary. Traditional media is still a staple for brand building. However, integrating traditional advertising and making those “channels” work seamlessly together with the new channels calls for specific marketing intent and brand effort. In other words, step out of the cave!

Brand building today requires integration and volume of exposure.

Needless to say, brand building in today’s marketplace is as important as ever, but it’s a tad more complex. It takes time and effort of a different sort. The introduction of the digital environment and the variety of channels now available has created an explosion of brand building possibilities – desktop and mobile platforms for Google adwords and YouTube campaigns, app advertising to social media properties (Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.). Amidst all that is new (which changes almost weekly), basic marketing protocols still remain. The message must still be clear but also emotive enough to resonate with the target; the audience must be identified with greater dimension and now defined by the rigidness of demographics; the strategies must be focused but multiple, to cover a wider range of niches and technologies; and the objectives have to be defined and measured for each and every variable.

Brand building has evolved dimensionally to allow for the ability to dialogue in order to build a community. The brand not only calls this community home, but also allows consumers, viewers and connections to come over and stay for a visit. They will possibly share a story or two. This provides the opportunity to convert potential consumers to the elusive brand ambassador status – that really should be the goal. An evolving relationship based on the understanding of expectation and yes – love and possibly trust! To not engage, converse, or reach out to consumers all leads to one result: Not being found. This means your brand or business is in the dark somewhere, winking madly where no one can see!

Websites, social media, content marketing and search optimization, mobile accessibility and proliferation have opened up a dynamic that brand building must live and excel in. Brand building involves creating the stage to spotlight brand in a forum for discussion, for sharing and for consumers to participate. Only then can brand building in today’s marketplace lead to brand trust and yes, brand love.

How are your brand building efforts going? Any challenges you need assistance with?