According to the Marketing Dictionary, a brand is an "identifying mark, symbol, word, or combination of the same that separates one company's product or services from another firm's.'' 'Brand' is a comprehensive term that includes all brand names and trademarks." This concept is, indeed, derived from the marking concept of placing a sign or symbol upon an animal to demark its owner.
But, there's more to this modern tale. According to the Computer Desktop Encyclopedia, there is something called Branding, which is "Applying a trade name to a product or service. It also refers to developing awareness of the name. Branding is always important, but in the early days of the Internet, it was a major hot topic and tactic. Companies spent a fortune attempting to gain market awareness, no matter how much money they lost."
It's important to understand the differences between branding and marketing if you want to compete to get top marketing jobs or top marketing assistant jobs. Jobs in marketing are not always about branding, and what that means is those seeking out good brand marketing jobs need to be knowledgeable in both areas—the area of branding and the area of marketing.
When a corporation doesn't understand brand marketing or have the right personnel for it, its losing money — it's that simple. So, for people who can excel at their jobs in marketing, for those who qualify for jobs in marketing, being able to market branding is a great advantage and asset to any company.
When you brand a product, you use advertising, marketing, and communications expertise to put your company's mark on a certain product or service. Successful branding campaigns are capable of making or breaking companies. "Once a brand has created positive sentiment among its target audience, the firm is said to have built brand equity. Some examples of firms with brand equity — possessing very recognizable brands of products are: Microsoft, Coca-Cola, Ferrari, Sony, The Gap, and Nokia," says Investopedia.
The Apple computer corporation has been using branding recently to imprint the concept of "cool" upon everything it sells. Apple has used the same market campaign to make its commercially more successful competitor Microsoft seem "uncool" or "out of shape". While it cannot brand Microsoft, Apple can strengthen its own brand by contrasting itself with a competitor that doesn't deliver like it does.
Branding is intended to make a company stand out from competition. Branding is meant to "differentiate" a company from all others. Look at the examples already cited: Coca-Cola, Apple, Microsoft, Ferrari, and Sony. These all are differentiated from their competitors. One extreme example of successful differentiation with branding is Xerox. Another one is Google. These companies have been so successful at branding that their very names have become synonymous with the very functions they serve. Xerox now means "scanning/copying" documents. Google now means "look it up on the Internet".
However, these mental associations are not just the product of branding. They are also the result of brand marketing.
Jobs in marketing include jobs in brand marketing. With brand marketing, you have to bring the two different strands together. If there's branding without marketing, all you get is an abstract idea or concept that doesn't get off the drawing board—literally. Coke may be the "real thing", but it doesn't do much good to the executives at the Coca-Cola Company for just only them to know about it. There's marketing required to get the message out about Coke's branding. On the other hand, even the best marketing department can't do much with something that just isn't there. The marketing department needs a brand to be present for them to present.
So, as a brand marketer, you will have access to the top marketing jobs as well as the top marketing assistant jobs (which you can use for your career advancement). Jobs in marketing are expanding beyond just those of glorified salesmen, and you have to have a keen mind for concepts and the finer points of communications details if you're going to be successful many marketing jobs these days. Branding is what sets one company apart from another, even when (and especially when) they sell similar lines of product. If we think of sporting goods companies, can we really say what is so extra-special about Nike or Adidas? Both companies seek to make the best quality sport products. But one brands itself with a special "swish" emblem and the catch-phrase "just do it"; the other has made a logo out of its very name and has branded itself as being THE purveyor of only the best quality sports-related gear — in fact, especially better than its arch rival, Nike!
Brand marketing jobs are for those who have special skills in discovering and then differentiating the outstanding traits of the company they work for, while being able to communicate them, too. The average annual pay for a brand marketing job is $64,000. It's well worth the time of those who are studying marketing now to pay close attention to brand marketing jobs.