Remember That Jingle? A Lesson In Branding.
Oh I wish I were an __________ _________ wiener; that is what I’d truly like to be. For if I were an __________ _________ wiener, everyone would be in love with me. (need help, watch this)
How about this one?
I am stuck on ________ _____, because ________ ______’s stuck on me. (need help, watch this)
Plop, plop, ______, _______, oh what a ____________ it is. (need help, watch this)
These have been driving me crazy as of late. Not because I really mind the jingles or the songs. On the contrary, I have been singing some of these with my 6 year old son as of late, especially the Oscar Mayer ones, they’re just plain fun. No, these have been driving me crazy because it emphasizes something many companies have been neglecting as of late: the importance of brand.
Is It Really About The Name?
I have noticed many companies as of late trying to find a name that is “perfect”. Whether it’s fun, silly, serious, keyword perfect or whatever criteria the business owner deems important…if we just find the right name, we’re good, right? Not exactly.
Think about the above jingles. Oscar Mayer (meats), Band-Aid (wound care), and Alka-Seltzer (digestive relief)….all of these names are now known by just about everyone, but it’s not because the name was “perfect” to start, but because the brand was made known, and the product was effective. Granted, you can shoot yourself in the foot with a ridiculous name (just watch Shark Tank sometime for some clues on really bad company names), but it’s not the magic bullet either.
Why The Jingles Were Effective
Now I’m not saying that you need to go get a jingle for your brand, especially if you’re an SMB. However, what these represent can teach us a lot about how to brand effectively. The three jingles I mentioned at the start of this article illustrate how to effectively brand your business.
Make your brand specific to your audience. If you look at the jingles, and also the commercial’s that came with them, they are specific to the audience’s they are trying to attract. Oscar Mayer and Band-Aid target to moms and kids. Alka-Seltzer targeted to adults (likely in the 30’s+).
Make your brand memorable. The simplicity of these the jingles are great. They’re short, they’re fun, and they communicate the product and message (eat Oscar Mayer meats, be happy….use Band-Aids to heal wounds….deal with your indigestion with Alka-Seltzer). Beyond these three brands, there are some great examples of making the brand memorable today. For instance, Dollar Shave Club is not memorable, in my opinion, because of their low cost razors. Rather, their website is quite unique, and their YouTube advertisement sticks with you.
Make your product great. No matter how great your brand concept might be, if you don’t have a great product to back it up, it won’t matter. If Oscar Mayer, Band-Aid or Alka-Seltzer failed to deliver on what the branding message promised, it would have all been for naught. It’s important to ensure your product matches the quality of your brand.
Make it something people what to share with others. If your branding efforts are fun, people will want to share them. Think about Jones Soda, or even Dollar Shave Club. Both of these brands rely more heavily on guerilla and viral marketing over “traditional” marketing. The videos produced by Dollar Shave club are ones men want to share with each other, in part because they’re entertaining. Jones Soda bottles are ones people want to share with each other because they are, in part, collector’s items, with many different pictures appearing on the labels (even within the same pack).
Make 2014 Your Brand Year
If you haven’t already begun thinking about your own brand, you really want to build it into your 2014 plan. If you struggle with it, take heart, so do many other businesses! Rather than beating your head against the wall trying to make the brand awesome, consider partnering with company who has experts at helping craft a brand image and message that will resound with your audience. Give the LocalDirective team a call, and make sure 2014 is the year your brand soars!