Branding vs Advertising – Know the Difference

by | Business Growth, Marketing

Branding and advertising are the two main elements when you are planning to build brand awareness for your product or services. Failure to comprehend the difference between these two components often results in a typical marketing gap. We all know that branding and advertising are both parts of marketing and handled with a precise purpose of increasing the profit. But they operate in distinct ways.

Branding is all about creating an identity. Giving answers to your customer’s questions such as What’s your name? Who are you? What do you sell? The answers to these questions are what define you as a brand. It is an act of founding the brand. It’s all about influencing potential buyers with your brand in any form so they remain loyal to your company or products. One good example is your logo. It represents your identity. It provides the positioning of your company. It is a process where you bring down the awareness of the firm to a single word. But bear in mind that branding comes before marketing. It is not a one time practice, but it’s an ongoing process.

Related article: The importance of Branding

Advertising, on the other hand, is the practice of exposing your company or services to the marketplace to get known. Mostly, it is an act of spreading a word about your business. More on educating consumers on what you have to offer in your product or service. You construct your ad campaign after creating your brand strategy and this could be a one-time activity. This may be done through multiple mediums such as on TV, radio, print and digital. It’s more direct in nature with respect to achieving the desired objective.

Many people are still having a hard time to distinguish the difference between branding and advertising. Let me give you an example, check the image below.

branding - rebel digital

Image source:

The picture above is a great example of branding. Toyota knows that people watching the event knows Toyota. They don’t need to post a flashy animated banner saying that they are Toyota and they are a car company brand. Just the brand name does the trick. They are exposing people to their brand while those people are doing something they enjoy, going to a sporting event.

Now let’s talk about advertising and compare it with branding. Using the same above example which is the brand Toyota.

rebel digital - advertising

Image source:

The above image is a sample ad from Toyota. And the ad goal is to drive people into their shop to avail their products and services. As you’ve noticed, they are educating the customer, telling them the things they might not know about their price deals and why they should avail it.

The same rules apply when you are planning to put a banner on a website. It is critical to know what exactly your goals are. Whether you’re looking to get clicks, sign-ups or other actions to be performed if you are running an advertisement campaign. On the other hand, you need to put your brand in places where your target customers are spending time and enjoying themselves if you’re running a brand campaign.

Let say that you put up a new car rental business and are looking to build your brand. Putting a banner on a popular travel blog for the year could get you some great exposure and over time attract people to your site. However, if you are aiming for a much faster result, you can create a special offer or sales campaign and run it within Google Ads paying per click but being able to calculate the cost to get a customer or participation in a special offer.

The point is simple, You just have to make sure and be clear with your own marketing efforts to reach your goals because there is a difference between branding and advertising. Both have a different role to play in marketing strategy. And knowing this difference is very important to come up with a strategy that will leverage your business marketing goal.

Related article: Unique branding ideas that actually works