Recognising the true ROI of business branding


(2 minute read)

Branding has no ROI. True or false?


Think about the last time you walked into a Starbucks coffee house and ordered a coffee. The power of branding is what’s making you pay what would otherwise be considered way over the odds for these products.

Brewed coffee is, by definition, a commodity, and there is very little you can do to add value to them. In this instance, business branding provides a tangible ROI as it paves the way for companies to increase profits through higher price points.

Branding encourages loyalty

When branding is done well, it evokes reactions and emotions among its target audience, the likes of which can have a very strong bearing on our actions.

Loyalty to a particular brand of food, drink or supermarket is primarily driven by our understanding of a brand and a desire to be associated with it.

Branding creates recognition

Brand recognition in its strongest form can mean brands don’t even need to use words. Nike is a classic example. Even when stripped back to just its iconic swoosh, the brand is instantly recognisable. And Starbucks removed their brand name from their logo entirely in 2011 because their famous crowned mermaid icon had become more than enough branding to ensure recognition.

Using well-crafted branding to communicate your company ethos, products, services and proposition to clients allows you to differentiate in your marketplace and be memorable.

Being understood as a business and sticking fast in the minds of your audience are two powerful success factors that only professional branding can consistently deliver.

Branding provides clarity

A cup of black coffee is a cup of black coffee. End of story.

But a cup of Starbucks black coffee is brewed from a particular type of bean that has been sourced responsibly and served in a comfortable and well-designed coffee shop with free Wi Fi and other perks.

All of that additional detail has been generated by branding and marketing communications. Branding helps a business clearly communicate its offering to its audience, and really good branding ensures the audience has an emotional response to that message, and never forgets it.

Branding is often seen as a cost rather than an investment

While branding clearly helps differentiate your business, many start-ups believe professional branding to be an intangible expense rather than a worthy investment. As such, they endeavour to create their own branding, which can actually harm their business in the long term.

To stand out in increasingly saturated markets, it’s crucial that businesses use professional and consistent branding. See it as your chance to get ahead, rather than an expense.

So, what will be your ROI from professional branding?

  • Client loyalty - Professional, relevant branding encourages brand loyalty and repeat business

  • Client trust - Professional design conveys a message of quality and consideration, meaning customers will trust your brand as one that operates to a high standard at all times.

  • Differentiation - Well-considered branding differentiates your business from the millions of others and makes it easily recognisable.

  • Positioning - Proper branding makes it possible to position your brand for the correct target market and strike a chord with your audience.

  • Clarity - Professional branding provides clarity of message and help explain your offering

The trick is to remember that not all ROI is financial, and it can’t all be clearly laid out in a spreadsheet. But that doesn’t mean it has no value.