Hospital Branding: The 5 “E’s” of Branding

Hospital Branding: The 5 “E’s” of Branding

If you’ve attended a marketing or branding conference, you’ll agree there are dozens of definitions of the term “branding.”  From the creation of an identity to the production of a commercial, the word certainly gets a lot of use (and misuse) and is attached to many meanings.  I recently attended Brand ManageCamp, a global gathering on branding where many well-known experts and authors shared their wisdom.  David Aaker, considered to be today’s branding guru by many and author of the recent “Aaker on Branding,” spoke and his insights helped me round out the right definition of the term. I will admit, however, it’s tough to sum up “branding” in a single statement, so here are the “5 E’s of Branding,” to put on your mental shelf next to the “4 P’s of Marketing.” Essence As Aaker explains, the brand essence is the first step in determining your brand strategy and reflects “the higher purpose of your brand and the reason it exists.”  The essence includes your brand differentiation, benefits provided, and proof points.  In “essence,” it’s the essence of your brand’s being. The starting point to determining your brand essence is to clearly identify the innovation and inspiration behind what gave it birth in the first place, whether a unique niche or consumer benefit. Tactically speaking, this is the step in the branding cycle where great naming and identity strategies are born that visually and verbally reinforce the unique essence. Expectations Great brands create certain expectations before a consumer even uses them for the first time.  The benefits they provide are promoted through all media; paid, earned, and owned. ...
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