Branding at the Speed of Ducks

- March 6, 2012

"Smart Monday/Positioning"

Hello again, I’m Jim Glover, That Branding Guy, for Once a Day Marketing, where business takes shape. And today is Smart Monday and you know what that means, that’s when we increase your knowledge base about all things marketing- and branding-related. Today’s title is “Branding at the Speed of Ducks.” We’re going to define branding citing the University of Oregon’s football team as an example.

Just what is branding? Branding is the process that you use to create a clear identity of your products and services to target audiences and to also clearly differentiate your product and services from your competition. You want your customers to understand your brand and to gravitate to your products because they clearly see the unique nature of your product and how it will benefit them. That’s what branding does.

Why is branding so important? There are a gazillion products and services out there. How does the typical consumer remember it all? So through your branding efforts, you create messaging that cuts through the clutter. You create an identity they will remember and hopefully, when it comes time to buy a product or service, they will naturally gravitate right towards yours because of their familiarity and confidence in your brand.

You can tell by my Oregon t-shirt and hat (what I’m wearing in my video blog) that I’m a proud alumnus right now because the University of Oregon Ducks just won their first Rose Bowl in 95 years. It’s interesting to note that, over the course of these 95 years, the Ducks lost a lot of games but recently they’ve become somewhat of a powerhouse in college football. They have been leading the pack when it comes to branding. I can’t think of another team right now in the whole nation that’s doing such a great job in branding their football program.

Through its branding, Oregon is known for many things. It’s now known as the fastest team out there. It’s now known for the most innovative coach,   the flashiest uniforms and the best stadium to play football in, and probably for the #1 mascot in the nation, Puddles, who looks a lot like Donald Duck. Everything the Ducks are doing right now is to solidify that brand in the market place, to make sure that everybody knows they are a fast, elite college football team.

This has a lot of positive impact. It increases their advertising opportunities with sponsors. It increases ticket sales and television deals, and even gets high school recruits to think about coming to the University of Oregon because they want to be on a team like that. And when those recruits, for instance, clearly understand what the Oregon brand is all about and they are one of those kind of guys―fast and elite football player―then they are going to very interested in the University of Oregon brand. That’s what branding really does for you. It focuses people’s thoughts and actions in the direction you want them to go.

To sum it all up, branding is the process that enables you to create the right identity for your product or services in the market place, target the right customers and clearly differentiate your product from the competition. That’s why branding is so important to the success of your company: it gives customers a clear understanding of what your product is all about. We’ll be talking a lot more about this process in Once a Day Marketing over the coming year.

Thanks again for joining us on Smart Monday and please stop by tomorrow for Strategic Tuesday. I also encourage you to share our site with your friends; we’d love to build our following. I’m Jim Glover, That Branding Guy, for Once a Day Marketing, where business takes shape. We will see you next time.