What’s the difference between branding and marketing? Branding is about meaning, but marketing is about method. Brand is something that you already have that you’re trying to distill and communicate. Marketing is how you communicate that message, which comes down to the four Ps: product, price, place, and promotion (Tamsen adds a fifth P for the people you serve).
Behind the meaning and the method are mandates, what creates meaning and drives methods you make and take. Those mandates are how we see, which drives what we do. It’s those core beliefs and values of your organization that the Red Thread helps you uncover, connect, and communicate.
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– Here’s a question I get a lot, are branding and marketing the same? Well the quick answer is no, but that wouldn’t make for a very interesting video and podcast. So we’re going to go into why they’re not the same and the one thing you can do to make both stronger. I’m Tamsen Webster of tamsenwebster.com. That’s what we’re talking about this week on Find the Red Thread. And do me a favor, like and subscribe.
I like to joke that I’m a recovering marketer, but I am still actively in, and delighted to be in, the business of brand. So, what’s the difference? Here’s how I see it. I see brand as meaning. It’s the meaning that people have when they think of you.
“You” could be your brand, product, service, organization, individual. It’s derived from the sum total of peoples’ experiences with you. Which means brand, by the way, isn’t something that you choose, it’s the something that you have. Now that’s part of why I love to do it so much. It’s about figuring out, decoding, what that meaning is and where it comes from.
But marketing is equally interesting. But where brand is meaning, I see marketing as method. It’s the method for communicating who you are, what you stand for, out into the world. It’s how you figure out who you’re serving, how do you talk to them, how do they come to know what you do, how do you match what they want with what you have?
Now you can think of the classic four Ps of marketing as being really representative here. Product: what you make and serve. Price: how you price it. Place: where you do it. Promotion: how you talk about it. Plus, I like to add a fifth one which is the People that you serve in the first place.
So brand is meaning. Marketing is method. Now, behind that meaning and the method though are mandates. Mandates that we are not always conscious are there. And yet they guide everything that we do. They produce that meaning and they drive that method that we make, and the methods that we take.
Those mandates are how we see. How we see drives what we do. And these mandates are the core beliefs and values of the organization that drive all of that. Which means, just like brand, mandates aren’t chosen. They’re kind of what you have.
And that’s truly the work that I really love to do and that’s why I developed the Red Thread in the first place. Because the Red Thread is what connects all three. The Red Thread is what connects the mandates of why you do what you do, for whom and how, with the meaning that that produces in the marketplace and the methods that you choose to get it out there.
So, when you’re trying to figure out what do we need to do for branding and marketing, and what’s the difference and how do we figure it all out, know that it all makes sense in a very simple way. That our mandates, how we see the world, drive what we do. That produces the meaning that we have in other people, with other people, for other people, that produces our brand. And that brand is communicated through marketing, the method.
So mandates produce meaning, and marketing is the method for getting them out there. I’m Tamsen Webster of tamsenwebster.com. If you want some help figuring out what your mandates, what your Red Thread is, find more information at tamsenwebster.com/consulting. If you like this episode, please remember to like and subscribe.