Often times, commercial real estate professionals struggle with the differences between marketing and branding. They’re the same, right? Well, not exactly. Just because you’re really kicking butt on your CRE marketing and lead generation doesn’t mean you have a recognizable or cohesive brand.
Branding vs. Marketing
A good way of understanding the differences between marketing and branding is to compare your business to your personal life. Your marketing would translate into the way you interact with friends, family and colleagues. It could include how you reach out to them and your influence on their choice to maintain a relationship with you.
Branding, on the other hand, represents who you are as a person. What are your interests? What types of people do you enjoy interacting with and what commonalities do you share with those people? What values are important to you in your life and what actions do you take daily to support your interests and passions?
Why do I need a brand?
It’s easy to get carried away with logos, color schemes, and the photos on your website when trying to build your brand, but it’s so much more than just that! Your brand is a story you offer to the people that are most likely to work with you, and that story will be their motivation to enter in a business relationship with you.
How do I build my brand?
Building a brand first begins with understanding exactly who you want your target audience to be. As much as we’d like to, it’s tough to appeal to everyone as most consumers are looking for a CRE professional that can accommodate their unique needs. So, who do you want to serve?
Let’s say you want to specialize in high-end retail properties. What makes you the ideal person to serve this market? What examples of proven success in this area do you have for potential clients looking to make an educated decision on who to work with?
Appealing to your target audience
If you’ve read any of our blogs before, you know that here at The Content Funnel we are huge fans of providing valuable content as part of a comprehensive marketing strategy – and that’s still true when it comes to your branding.
Part of branding is thinking about that target audience in almost every aspect of your business. Each time you make changes to your website, write new content, or share tidbits on your social media, ask yourself the same question. Is this content tailored to my target audience?
Recognizable and memorable
Once you’ve perfected your message and content as it relates to your target audience, make sure the way in which you share that information is consistent and recognizable. This is where a unique “look and feel” to all your marketing and branding comes into play. Your imagery, color scheme and photographs should all emulate your message and the audience you plan to serve.
Think about Starbucks – one of the world’s most recognizable and memorable brands. Just a glance at that green lady or the sight of someone holding a plastic cup with a bright green straw likely immediately reminds you of everything that is the Starbucks brand. From the pumpkin spice flavor of fall to the relaxing tunes and tasty muffins, you can remember every element of that brand from a simple act of recognition.
This article originally appeared on the The Content Funnel website.
About The Sundance Company
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.