Is marketing part of branding or is branding part of marketing? Or, are they one and the same? If you don't know, you're not alone. The line between the two can be blurry, and even marketers sometimes don't agree on where one begins and the other ends.
What is branding?
Branding is everything your company stands for. It is your company story, values, people and the experience your product or service provides. It is your logo and the message you want to communicate. Branding is what pulls, not pushes, your consumer in. It is the aspect of your business that resonates with you consumer, emotionally.
Because branding forms an emotional bond between a company and its target audience, it won't resonate with everyone, and that is okay. Your branding is personal and unique — every consumer can't share the same view of your brand.
What is marketing?
Marketing is the promotion of what your company stands for. It is the action of educating your consumer about your company, product or service. Marketing pushes consumers to your company by providing them with the necessary information to choose your brand over your competitors.
As a tool, marketing is the vehicle that communicates your brand. It is your social media accounts, your brochure and your advertisement.
What comes first, marketing or branding?
Invest in your branding before you invest in your marketing. Knowing who you are and what you stand for as a brand will clarify who your target audience is and how to best reach them. With a solid brand you can develop a cohesive marketing strategy that better addresses your business goals.