You know their logos. You know their names. Nike tells you to “just do it,” while Apple tells you to “think different.” This is all part of a branding effort, and for these companies, it has paid off in spades. But if you’re a small, up-and-coming company, you may be wondering how you can ever achieve these levels of success. So, let’s take a look at branding and its importance, and then dive into 25 branding resources sure to help you on your branding journey.
What is Branding?
There are a lot of definitions of branding out there, so to answer this question, why not turn to the experts? According to The Branding Journal, “Branding is the process of giving a meaning to a specific organization, company, products or services by creating and shaping a brand in consumers’ minds. It is a strategy designed by organizations to help people to quickly identify and experience their brand, and give them a reason to choose their products over the competition’s, by clarifying what this particular brand is and is not.”
Understanding branding will lead a company to develop its brand identity, which consists of the elements used to create a brand image. Brand identity typically stems from a company’s mission, value proposition, long-term goals, competitive position, and relevance to the values and interests of its target audience. The most common elements of brand identity include the brand name, logo, tagline, colors and graphics, styles and typography, and voice and tone. All of these elements work together to communicate to consumers who the company is and what it stands for.
Importance of Branding & Rebranding
Consistent branding should be part of any company strategy. It should be given a lot of thought, and once a brand identity is developed, it needs to be maintained. Deviating from an established brand identity can confuse consumers and negatively impact brand image, customer loyalty, and ultimately, sales.
Of course, brands usually must evolve to keep up with the times, requiring rebranding, but this is something that must be done very carefully. Rebranding should also include conducting a lot of consumer marketing research surveys to gauge the response of the public before a rebranding launch.
Because of the sheer importance of branding, it helps to have a robust list of branding resources at your fingertips. So let’s get started!
25 Great Branding Resources for Marketers
From books to blogs, podcasts to webinars, here are some of the best branding resources available to you.
Books on Branding
This book, one of the hundreds in the “Dummies” collection, gives you the nuts and bolts know-how to create, improve, or maintain a brand. This easy-to-understand guide helps you brand everything from products to services to individuals, with step-by-step advice on positioning your brand, advertising and promotion, avoiding blunders, and keeping your brand viable, visible, and healthy.
Promising to teach you how to turn your branding around in just 30 days without having to build from the ground up, author Kevin Albert provides a step-by-step guide to low-budget branding the right way. He offers up strategies that can help you sell more, increase your prices, and grow your ROI by improving your market perception.
In this entertaining but highly informative book, married couple Michael and Jaci Russo team up to talk about their experience in helping to create brand strategies for companies of all sizes. Their agency has worked with businesses all around America, building brand images from the ground up and helping them tap into the local market.
Your ultimate goal may be to increase sales, but you can’t do that without making genuine and lasting connections with customers. To do this, you need to tell compelling stories. In Donald Miller’s book, he talks about the seven essential elements to any story, beginning with the main character who has a problem (i.e., your target customer) and ending with your call to action (i.e., “check out our solution!”) that results in a sale and a satisfied customer.
Author and designer Michael Johnson dives into what it is that makes iconic brands tick. He looks at how a given logo or other branding effort was conceived and executed, and ultimately how it performed. He also discusses some of his own designs and their impact on the clients’ branding efforts, focusing on both the art and science behind successful branding.
Online Publications / Branding Resources
Branding Magazine covers thought leadership and conversations happening in the branding and marketing industries. The publication boasts a top-notch roster of writers, including many executive-level contributors from highly-respected agencies and industries. In it, you’ll find C-suite and design interviews, strategy insights, and practical how-to ideas. Branding Magazine has even expanded to include Branding News, a companion site providing updates on recent launches and upcoming events.
Brand Quarterly takes a holistic approach to brand management, pulling in relevant stories and data from various sectors of the marketing world. A quick glance at their latest articles reveals timely topics such as branding on social media, inspiring brand loyalty, out branding the competition, and branding internationally.
This quarterly publication calls itself the only global magazine dedicated to rebranding and brand development. As mentioned earlier, sometimes rebranding is a necessity, and Transform Magazine puts the spotlight on that topic. Not only will you discover how to successfully rebrand, but you’ll also hear from other brand leaders who have and learn important lessons on what to do – and what not to do.
This podcast, dedicated to helping entrepreneurs and designers build brands, is perfect for startups and up-and-comers. Each episode of the JUST Branding podcast explores the intimate details about the brand-building process with actionable tips from well-respected guest experts from all over the world, including thought-leaders such as Marty Neumeier and Chris Do.
How Brand Are Built is hosted by Rob Meyerson, a San Francisco-based brand strategist. In each episode, he interviews other branding professionals, including leading writers, names, designers, researchers, and strategists. These branding professionals discuss, in detail, what they do and how they do it. If you want to understand how brands are built, this podcast is for you!
Hosts Jordan Cohen, Jeff Murphy, and Sean Kelly bring you the stories, lessons, and people from the brands that have a reputation of being the most innovative in the world of branding. Tuning into this podcast is sure to help you gain knowledge about what’s working in the branding industry today.
A leading authority on social media and personal branding, Rebekah Radice hosts this weekly podcast that helps entrepreneurs build powerful online brands. Rebekah’s goal? To share “actionable strategies to generate more engagement, traffic, conversions, and sales through online, digital, and social media marketing.” Best of all, if you like your learning bite-size, her insights can be consumed in 30 minutes or less!
Nike. Apple. Mercedes. There’s no denying the importance of a logo. If you want to know how to create your own iconic logo, put the Logo Geek Podcast on your playlist. And while it will help you learn to design better logos and brand identities, host Ian Paget also interviews other successful entrepreneurs and graphic designers, diving into topics such as career advice, typography, mindset, and marketing.
Webinars / Branding Resources
Want to move past transactions and into relationships? Or, are you tired of trying to win business by having the lowest price? In this webinar, you’ll learn how to create a brand that connects with consumers. It dives into what to say in all your marketing messages, how to inject personality into your marketing message and make your brand more attractive, how to create an attention-grabbing tagline and memorable logo, and more.
Want to make your brand a success? This webinar from Oniracom teaches the strategies, tactics, and secrets for building a recognizable brand that turns one-time shoppers into lifelong customers, showing you how to make your brand instantly recognizable, develop deep emotional connections with your customers, and clearly differentiate from the competition.
Blogs on Branding
16. Sticky Branding
This business strategy company blog is filled with all sorts of helpful topics, including brand messaging, strategies and naming ideas, content marketing, and more. There’s very little fluff or clickbait, and because of the vast amount of content, you’ll also find very current topics and ideas.
Wouldn’t it be great to have cult-level loyalty, like those Apple customers who camp outside the store awaiting the release of the new iPhone? Now, you can! While it’s difficult to develop that level of following overnight, Cult Branding attempts to help businesses grow their loyalty in this manner. Therefore, content is hyper-focused on understanding customer motivation and branding in ways that will appeal to them.
18. Craig McBreen
Branding expert McBreen wants to help entrepreneurs bring their brand to life. His blog offers something for everyone, with topics like personal branding, creativity, brand-building through SEO, and more. Perhaps more distinctive, McBreen gives each story a personal touch that makes you feel he’s talking directly to you.
What does a fulfillment company have to do with branding? Turns out, quite a lot! This company, which invented the concept of fulfillment marketing, offers companies an easy way to brand themselves through their packaging. Great packaging not only helps with branding, but it can also lead to viral unboxing videos that can spread the word about your brand (1 in 5 consumers watch them).
Since 2006, Branding Strategy Insider has been focused on delivering meaningful, thought-provoking content that promotes an elevated conversation on branding while fostering community among marketers.
Developed as a searchable online database of brand strategy articles, BrandStruck also offers a blog complete with data-heavy topics and ideas. It covers current events that affect brands and branding, as well as branding strategies to guide readers to success. If you’re someone who loves data-backed information, BrandStruck is a blog you’ll want to follow.
Meetup allows people to organize online groups for in-person or virtual events. There are currently almost 80,000 branding members across 188 groups, around topics such as brand strategy, entrepreneurship, brand design, branding for startups, and more.
Branding conferences were largely put on hold in 2020 due to the pandemic, or they went virtual. Now, they’re back on! You can see upcoming 2021 & 2022 online marketing-related conferences in the United States at the link above from Fili.
A lot of people think of LinkedIn as nothing more than a website to job search and post resumes, or talent search and post jobs. However, there are also a lot of groups to join that are focused on branding, such as “Branding Professionals,” a group with more than 23,000 members looking to share and discuss brand marketing and PR strategies.
Last but not least is our company, SurveyLegend. Surveys are crucial when it comes to understanding your brand image, brand loyalty, brand perception, and more. It can also help you gauge reactions to rebranding strategies and new logo designs before you go to market. Of course, SurveyLegend is more than just beautifully designed, secure, and responsive surveys; we also keep a blog that often features great branding ideas and tips, such as 6 Ways to Build Brand Awareness.
Branding is the basis for any successful company. So without branding, you’re likely to get lost in a sea of competitors, and never make an impact in the minds of consumers. Surveys, again, are a great way to begin understanding your branding. So, are you ready to get started? Check out our design and branding templates, along with our market research templates, and check out how easy we make it to brand your surveys here. Then, join for free and begin creating your branding survey!
Have any great branding resources of your own that we may have missed? We’d love to include them next time, just let us know in the comments!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Branding is the process of giving meaning to a company, products, or services by creating and shaping a brand in consumers’ minds.
A branding survey allows marketers to gain an understanding of consumer’s attitudes toward their brand. It helps marketers gauge brand awareness, loyalty, price perception, and more.
Rebranding surveys allow marketers to gauge a segment of the population’s reaction to changes in branding. This could be the logo, tone, voice, slogans, etc.
Where can I find branding resources?
There are countless resources available as described in this blog (books, podcasts, webinars, etc). If you need to conduct surveys, SurveyLegend is always happy to help!