What branding isn’t

Do you think you know what branding is? While only you can answer for you, there are certainly a lot of voices out there (both expert and not so expert) that would like to help form your opinion. Odds are, if you are a bank or credit union professional with a few years’ experience under your belt, you’ve heard of branding and have at least a casual working knowledge of what it is and what it means to the future of your institution.

So while the jury is still out on exactly what branding is, it’s safe to say very little attention is paid to what branding isn’t. Bank and credit union professionals can learn a great deal about the true nature of branding by spending a little time learning what branding is not.

In that spirit, please read on for a few quick and dirty ideas about what a brand isn’t.

  • A brand is not a name.
  • A brand is not a website.
  • A brand is not a logo.
  • A brand is not a campaign or promotion.
  • A brand is not supplemental marketing materials (brochures, signs, banners, etc.).

Time and again, well-meaning banks and credit unions jump into big projects like a new name, logo or website thinking this will change their brand. Nothing could be further from the truth. While all these ancillary components are part of the brand, they certainly do not embody it.

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