It might seem like branding has been around forever. But in truth, what we know as “branding” today is a relatively new invention, driven by the new marketing methods of the 1960s.
Before those days, people bought products based on the quality alone. But after the advent of modern marketing, advertising and branding became as important to consumer decisions as quality.
Today, it’s no longer enough to just sell a good product. You can be sure that in almost any niche, many other competitors are also selling good products. Branding is what sets your business apart before people even get a chance to try what you offer.
Looking for new and creative ways to stand out from the crowd? We’ve got you covered — keep reading for some of the most unique branding ideas you’ve ever seen.
1. Switch Up Your Packaging
Whether people are browsing on the shelves or online, the way your products are packaged makes a huge difference in the customer’s decision. Unique packaging ideas can draw people in, and keep them coming back for more.
However, today’s customers have different packaging preferences than those of the past. Modern consumers are wary of waste. They’re more interested in packaging that’s recycled or recyclable, or even better, reusable in the long term.
For example, some trendy makeup companies started sending their products packaged in nice, reusable makeup bags. Those branded bags can become success symbols for the people who use them. Plus, customers get the satisfaction of knowing that they aren’t adding more packaging to the landfill.
2. Curate Content for Readers
On your social media site, there can be a lot of pressure to create new, unique content for people. While that’s an important part of the game, curating content is also a great way to show that your brand knows what’s up.
You should fill out your social media pages with brand photos, blog posts, and more. But people are also interested in seeing relevant posts and photos from other sources. Try reposting user-generated content (with credit, of course), and add related articles and how-tos from other sources to the mix.
This helps your followers see you as an indispensable industry resource. It also takes the pressure of your brand to generate all the content yourself. As long as you’re not sharing from direct competitors, you’re good.
3. Create an Archetype
You probably know the identities of your target customers well. But do you know which archetype your brand itself falls into?
Maybe you want people to see your brand as a risk-taking maverick. Or maybe you want people to see you as a steadfast mentor instead. Perhaps your brand is more like the girl or boy next door.
Understanding this identity will help drive your branding efforts, even if you never directly tell your customers what your archetype is. Work with your marketing team to figure out your own brand persona and use that knowledge to drive your branding decisions.
4. Use Storytelling
Everyone’s heard of “brand stories” by now. Having a story behind your brand is certainly an important part of your marketing strategy. But you can also use storytelling as branding in many other ways.
For example, some products are hard to describe online, such as fragrances. But if you tell a story about how a certain product, such as a perfume, will make someone feel, you can captivate their attention.
It’s all about selling a lifestyle or an aspiration. Stories tap into our most primal desires and offer a creative way to give information about your product — even if it’s hard to describe.
5. Check Out the Competition
Looking at your competition might give you some ideas on how to brand your own business. But more importantly, it can give you ideas of what not to do.
When looking at your competitors’ approach to branding, look for the gaps. Maybe all of your competitors take a serious approach to a product. Why not set yourself apart by being the brand that makes people laugh?
By knowing both your competitors and your target audience well, you can identify gaps in the market that help you know exactly how to stand out.
6. Design a New Logo
Wondering how to get your brand out of a rut? A new logo might be just the thing you need.
For established brands with easily recognizable logos, switching things up might not be a great idea. But if you’re still trying to get off the ground, your logo could be one thing that’s holding you back.
Work with a professional graphic design team to come up with a new approach.
A new logo can make customers see your brand in a fresh light. Make your logo something that looks new and exciting, but that will also hold up well for years to come. For example, don’t put too much stock in a trend that will pass soon, or one that’s becoming played out (such as Millennial pink logos).
7. Don’t Be Afraid to Alienate Some People
Trying to appeal to everyone is the downfall of some brands. It’s much better to please your target audience well while alienating others than to take a middling approach that tries to please everyone — but doesn’t really work for anyone.
Some of the best brands aren’t loved by everyone, everywhere. But they are loved by a passionate subset of consumers who stay loyal to the brand and share it with their circles. This can create a valuable “insider’s club” feel for the people who follow your brand.
Focus on your target audience. If people outside of it don’t like your brand, don’t worry — it’s not for them anyway!
Which Branding Ideas Do You Love?
These branding ideas can springboard your creative branding process, but don’t stop there. Keep generating new ideas and trying new things. Soon, you’ll see the results roll in.
For example, once you’ve tried a few of these tips, you might want to add some promotional products to the mix. Looking for branded product ideas? Check out what we have to offer here!