The Secret to Creating a Successful Brand – Part 1

By Madison Bennett, Associate Content Creator

So, you want to build your brand, but… where do you start? Whether you’re running a small business or a large company, understanding how consumers think is the secret sauce to success. In order to appeal to your consumer, you need to understand the psychology around purchasing and what makes people connect to your company and its products. In part 1, we’ll discuss the top factors to consider when building your brand from the ground up.


This is where the psychology of branding starts. As authors Susan Gunelius and Kristi Hedges put it in their article The Psychology and Philosophy of Branding, Marketing, Needs, and Actions, “Consumers build brands, not companies.” The ultimate goal for creating a successful brand is to build a loyal following. Whether it’s yourself as the brand, a company, or a small business, understanding how to keep consumers coming back for more is the most important factor. This starts with creating a meaningful connection between your consumers and the brand itself.


In the article, “Mind Over Matter: The Psychology of Branding” by Nugno, the author spoke with Damien Mcloughlin, Professor of Marketing and Marketing Subject Area Head at UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School in Ireland.

“… according to his colleague, Byron Sharp, author of How Brands Grow, “Differentiation is more important than distinctiveness, and the reason for that is, if you think about your own shopping behavior, most of us buy the same products all the time. If you use Colgate toothpaste, you’ll always use Colgate toothpaste. If you use Barry’s tea you’ll always use Barry’s tea, and it’s the distinctiveness of those brands that cause this. If you show a consumer the Nike swoosh, they’ll be able to recognize the brand. If you show them a particular shade of red, they know it’s Coca Cola.

It’s the distinctiveness of brands that really drive their success. They need to be physically and  mentally available. Physical availability is easy to understand; your consumer must be able to actually get whatever the product is. The idea of mental availability is the idea that when you think about a problem ‘I’m thirsty, I’m warm, I need to buy a new pair of jeans, I’d like to go on holidays,’ whatever it is, that consumers are not aware of the full range of products and services that are available. So, what you want when a consumer thinks about a problem or whatever they want to buy, you want your product to end up in the consideration set.””

We live in a society that is constantly on the go, and with the current state of the world, our minds are all over the place. Creating a distinctive brand is what will create that trigger in consumers’ minds when they’re looking to buy a product. From the design to the logo, you want your brand to come to mind on the consumer’s first thought when considering a purchase.

Loyalty and distinctiveness might be at the top of your list when you’re building your brand, but there are so many factors to consider within just those two areas. In part two, we’ll dive deeper into specific ways to make your brand distinct and create a loyal following.

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