9 thoughts on “The difference between Identity, Branding, & Brand explained – in “Twitterese””

  1. I think you meant corporate marketing terminology 😉
    “particularly since in corporate branding terminology, “identity” means name+logo+design standards”
    And why I say band “branding”.

    1. Nope. I actually meant “branding”. You’ve convinced me to be careful about how I use the verb, but I’m still going to keep using it. The actions of building / managing / sustaining a brand are all part of making a “brand” work – otherwise I’d be out of a job -but as I’ve tried to point out, it isn’t the most important part.

  2. I think of brand first as a noun. To me brand is your name, what your name stands for and the associations people make with your name when they see or hear your name. This can apply to people or organizations. I believe branding is the process of aligning your internal culture with your external reputation.

    1. Absolutely. Well said Rex. That’s what I was trying to capture clumsily with the graphic. Brand as the noun that sums up the sum total of all the associations / expectations / conversations people have with or about your product. Branding is the alignment.

  3. A fascinating take on a great metaphor.

    If I may suggest this form of brand, branding and identity interpretation:

    BRAND = “executable” REPUTATION
    (One that you can take action on and live by)
    If the BRAND is not executable then you cannot live by it or deliver it as a promise.

    BRANDING = the verb or set actions all related to living that BRAND. How you walk, talk, act, promote etc…

    IDENTITY = the necessary tools, standards to adhere to the BRAND

    in agreement with what Dennis and David are saying

    What is the Executable Reputation for Chris Brogan? A classic example of an executable reputation is BMW’s ULTIMATE DRIVING EXPERIENCE. Every day their staff, sales and customers know what they are buying, building and driving – the ultimate.

    That is an executable reputation because as a staff member at BMW I know that I go to work to build the ultimate – whether I am on the assembly line or painting the car.

    The BRANDING they do are short films, campaigns, James Bond product placements that associate the car to the ultimate secret agent.

    The IDENTITY are their design standards, the way their cars are designed (Product / Brand Language), the way their showrooms look and feel.

    Without getting into a longer discourse, I hope this helps…

  4. I actually think your break down is pretty simple. Although for a person or entity the identity is not the actually person or place but their make up of their mission, vision and values. This is their identity that drives brand and branding efforts and allows them to articulate to the marketplace what they are about and create the actions around that accordingly.

    1. I think values are definitely part of identity, but I think an individual or company or product defines their mission and vision as the first step of reaching out through branding.

      Effective branding activities have to be based on the values and non-negotiable beliefs built into their identity. But Vision and Mission are about projecting identity to other humans, and therefore need to be more flexible.

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