Branding and marketing a business is essential to its success. But can one excel without the other? Which needs to come first for optimal success? James Orsini—the President of The Sasha Group—knows a thing or two about branding. He spoke on the topic in episode #22 of the Content Callout podcast.
Branding vs. Marketing
In the episode, James points out that people need to understand that there is a difference between branding and marketing. GaryVee spent a lot of time on his personal brand which gave him the credibility to launch his own agency (VaynerX, VaynerMedia, etc.). The brand allowed the agency to birth. Once your brand is strong, you can sell sneakers, wine, etc. and the brand will carry it. That’s where smaller businesses get it wrong.
You need to brand to differentiate yourself in a crowded space. The reality is that takes time. You have to be in it for the long-haul. It’s not about doing a PPC campaign and spiking sales. James says they always ask “What is it that you’re trying to accomplish?” Then they work backward from there. James can tell a client what to do to get to their end game—but you must always start with the end in mind.
Why you need to invest in brand development
The Sasha Group can point to GaryVee’s success and the success of others to show why brand development is so important. But he also emphasizes that you can’t wait for a perfect product. If you do, you’ll never get off the ground.
They believe that volume trumps perfection. A commercial has to be perfect when you only have 30 seconds to tell a story. In a print magazine with only 60 pages, your page has to look like art. But the internet is limitless. Your job is to put out as much content as you possibly can, then double-down on what’s working. You simply pull away from the stuff that’s not.
It’s math and it’s art. You need someone that understands the analytics. Why? Because most platforms don’t come with decent analytics. But you also need someone who can creatively stimulate through design or copywriting.
Engage. Engage. Engage.
Brand development also includes engaging with people on your content. Respond to comments, answer questions, send DM’s. James points out the necessity of interacting with other people’s content too. Few people realize the benefit of doing this but it’s important. Why? Algorithms are based on engagement. You have to engage with your followers consistently. You can’t be afraid to share someone else’s content that’s worth sharing. It will only help you.
To learn more about brand development, utilizing social media to boost your online presence, and marketing like Gary Vee—listen to episode #22 of the Content Callout podcast!