A brand’s culture is what it stands for—what are the brand’s moral values. Social Media branding is done through giving brands a human persona. To be a successful brand, the brand must stand for something. This is what makes the brand stand apart from other brands. To be a well adjusted human being, a person must have a value system that they draw upon to make choices.
To be a successful human being, a person must make good choices. How are those choices made? Moral choices have many secondary issues involved. This is what making value judgments and choices so difficult. There is so much noise and clutter. Having a moral code simplifies these choices. A person with a well-defined moral code has a point of departure to start from in defining their place in the world. This is why brand culture is so important.
There is a clutter of products in today’s modern market place brought on by social media. Anyone with compelling content can post that content onto a social media platform. How does a marketer make their product stand out?
A significant way is to create a brand culture that the product can draw from when gray areas develop. The modern market place many times has many gray areas. A brand culture allows a product to navigate those gray areas.
In a new media age, three areas of branding are critical. Those three areas are identity, image, and culture. They are very similar, but they have important differences. The similarities and differences are important in knowing how to create a world class brand in the social media era. This is a very technical area, but it is an area that must be studied in order to understand how to create brands that are genuinely different in a cluttered market place.
An identity is who we are. An image is who other people see us as. Image is how other people define our brand. A culture is WHY we are who we are and why people see us as they do.
An IDENTITY explains who we are. A way to understand identity is to observe the football cheer of Marshall University. At a football game, especially a home game, Marshall Rooters will occupy both the left and right sides of the stadium. At the appropriate time, someone will yell out, “Who are we?” The opposite side will respond, “We are—MARSHALL”. This is repeated three times, with the last “Marshall” an absolute crescendo that would wake the dead. After this cheer, the opposing team and its supporters definitely know that they are playing Marshall University. They have no doubt.
The definition of identity has a strong implication for branding. An identity proves or recognizes that someone or something is a specified person or thing. Identity recognizes that something is worthy to be recognized. When you identify something you associate it with something or someone closely.
An IMAGE is how people define your identity. Are you cool, subdued, nondescript? A sneaker brand has an image of “cool shoes”. This is what people instantly think when they hear that products name.
A brand CULTURE is the moral values that this brand conveys. For many years a retail brand had an image as being a very cold business.This company was seen as a company unconcerned about its employees and its workers. The culture of this company was just the opposite. The company’s culture was one in which supervisors very much cared about their workers and customers. The company could never seem to convey this image. Then Hurricane Katrina hit.