This blog post is based on a book I recently read: "The Brand Gap", by Marty Neumeier. I highly recommend it.
In a world which is information-rich and time-poor, branding is what differentiates your company from the competition.
A brand is a person's gut feeling about a product or service. It's what your customers feel, not what you feel.
On the market, there can only be one company which can be the cheapest. All the other ones need to use branding to differentiate themselves.
Differentation is the first step in creating a powerful brand. When everyone zigs, zag. When everyone zags, zig.
If customers feel your product/company/service can be substituted, your brand isn't charismatic enough.
A good brand differentiates itself by expressing its creativity in the most extreme levels, while still remaining in the boundaries of what's considered as acceptable by the general public.
To begin building a brand, ask yourself the following three questions:
1) Who are you?
2) What do you do?
3) Why does it matter?
Finally, keep in mind that the more your brand grows, the more vulnerable it becomes.