Brand Marketing: How to Build a Strategy with Examples + Tips

Beth Bagley
February 20, 2024
Brand Marketing: How to Build a Strategy with Examples + Tips

Brand marketing is essential for any marketing plan aiming for success. Consider how brands like Salesforce, Apple, and HubSpot have become integral to their customers' identities, not just through the products they offer but through what their brands represent. This connection goes beyond simple consumer needs; it's about what associating with these brands signifies about an individual's identity.

This principle is increasingly applicable in the B2B sector, where the importance of brand marketing is on the rise. Below we explore brand marketing, and its role in shaping a B2B brand identity, how to put your strategy together, and more.

What is Brand Marketing?

Brand marketing is a strategic approach focused on building and elevating a company's brand identity, reputation, and values in the minds of consumers. It encompasses a wide range of activities, from developing a compelling brand story and visual identity to executing marketing campaigns that consistently communicate the brand's message across various channels.

The goal of brand marketing is to foster a strong, positive connection between the brand and its target audience– increasing brand awareness, loyalty, and ultimately, consumer preference and market share. This approach not only differentiates the brand from competitors but also creates an emotional resonance with consumers, encouraging them to choose the brand over others.

Brand Marketing vs Traditional Marketing

Brand marketing and regular marketing fulfill unique roles in a company's strategy. Brand marketing aims to build the brand's identity and emotional connection with its audience, focusing on long-term brand equity through storytelling and engagement strategies like social media and content marketing. Its success is measured by brand awareness and loyalty.

Traditional marketing targets immediate sales and leads, emphasizing product features and benefits through direct advertising and promotions, with success quantified by sales figures and conversion rates. While brand marketing nurtures lasting customer relationships and brand value, regular marketing drives short-term sales, both essential for holistic business growth.

What is Brand Equity?

Brand equity represents the value and strength of a brand, reflecting how consumer perceptions, experiences, and associations contribute to a brand's market position and competitive advantage. It encompasses elements such as brand awareness, loyalty, perceived quality, and brand associations, which collectively influence a customer's decision to choose one brand over another. 

High brand equity can lead to benefits like the ability to command premium prices, increased customer loyalty, and greater marketing effectiveness, all positively impacting a company's bottom line.

Brand equity is the difference between your buyers selecting your brand because they want to show the world they love the product and share your company’s values, versus selecting a cheap “dupe” because they simply aim to fulfill the need for the product and nothing more. 

Brand Equity vs Brand Marketing

Brand marketing and brand equity are interconnected aspects of a company's strategy to build and manage its brand's reputation. Brand marketing focuses on the promotion and communication of the brand through various strategies aimed at increasing visibility, attracting new customers, and fostering loyalty. 

Brand equity is the value that a brand gains from consumer perception, encompassing brand awareness, associations, perceived quality, and loyalty. It represents the tangible and intangible benefits that a brand holds, built over time through consistent marketing efforts and positive customer experiences.

While brand marketing is the active process of promoting and shaping the brand's public image, brand equity is the outcome of these efforts, reflected in the brand's value and strength in the market.

Why is Brand Marketing Important?

It probably feels like your market is growing more and more saturated and competitors are popping up left and right. Brand marketing helps cut through the noise and build trust, loyalty, and recognition, creating a strong identity that sets a product or service apart from its competitors.

Here are a few reasons why brand marketing should be a priority for every business:

  • Trust and Credibility: A well-marketed brand is perceived as more reliable and trustworthy by consumers.
  • Customer Loyalty: Strong brand marketing fosters emotional connections, turning casual buyers into loyal customers.
  • Competitive Edge: A distinctive brand identity helps a business stand out in a crowded marketplace.
  • Enhanced Value: Well-regarded brands often command higher prices for their products or services, reflecting perceived quality and value.

The Key to B2B Brand Marketing: Media Brands

B2B businesses need to develop a brand separate from the company that focuses on creating industry-specific thought leadership content, also known as a media brand. This content should be published through a holistic, omnichannel approach for maximized reach.

Developing a B2B brand identity through media brands presents a unique opportunity to shape the overall perception of your main brand. By focusing on creating personable content that addresses the needs and interests of your target audience, rather than directly selling to them, you can establish a more relatable and engaging brand image. This approach helps in:

  • Creating Awareness: Utilizing various media platforms to showcase your brand's expertise and values.
  • Building Relationships: Engaging with your audience through content that offers value, advice, and insights.
  • Enhancing Perception: Position your brand as a thought leader and trusted advisor in your industry.

The content published within the distinct media brand will lift the perception of your main brand, boosting brand affinity and equity. 

How to Build a Brand Marketing Strategy

1. Know Your Product

Understanding Your Offering

Begin by gaining a deep understanding of your product or service. What problem does it solve? What benefits does it offer? How is it different from what's already available in the market? Knowing your product inside and out is the foundation of your brand marketing strategy.

Unique Value Proposition (UVP)

Identify and articulate your product's unique value proposition. This is a clear statement that describes the benefit of your offer, how you solve your customer's needs, and what distinguishes you from the competition.

Product Features and Benefits

List the features of your product and translate these features into benefits for your customers. Remember, features are about the product, but benefits are about the customer.

2. Research Your Target Audience

Demographics and Psychographics

Understand who your target audience is. This includes demographic information (age, gender, location, income level) and psychographic information (interests, values, lifestyle).

Customer Personas

Create detailed customer personas that represent your ideal customers. These personas should include not just demographics but also interests, challenges, goals, and behavior patterns.

Customer Needs and Preferences

Identify the needs, preferences, and pain points of your target audience. What motivates them? What are their most significant challenges related to what your product offers?

3. Craft a Brand Story

Emotional Connection

Your brand story should showcase the value of your brand. It should connect with your audience on an emotional level, making your brand memorable and relatable.

Brand Values and Mission

Incorporate your brand's values and mission into your story. This helps in building a brand that people can believe in and support over the long term.

Consistency Across Channels

Be sure your brand story is consistent in all channels. This consistency helps reinforce your brand identity and message.

4. Research Competitors

Market Analysis

Conduct a thorough analysis of your competitors. Who are they? What are their strengths and weaknesses? What marketing strategies do they use?


Identify opportunities to differentiate your brand from competitors. This could be through your product features, customer experience, pricing strategy, or marketing approach.


Decide how you want to position your brand in the market. This involves determining how you want your target audience to perceive your brand compared to competitors.

5. Use Consistent Branding

Visual Identity

Develop a strong visual identity for your brand. Elements like your logo, fonts, and brand colors should be used consistently across all marketing materials and channels.

Brand Voice

Establish a consistent brand voice and personality. Whether it's professional, friendly, quirky, or authoritative, your brand voice should reflect your brand's personality and resonate with your target audience.

Brand Guidelines

Create comprehensive brand guidelines that detail how your brand's visual and verbal elements should be used. This ensures consistency across all marketing efforts and touchpoints, which is crucial for building brand recognition and loyalty.

Brand Marketing Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

Brand marketing strategies are exciting initiatives for marketers because they involve creativity and storytelling, but things can take a turn when your boss wants to know how much progress you have made and all you can say is, “I have a feeling the customers like our vibe”. While there are some overall indicators of marketing success such as sales and site traffic, these metrics are hard to attribute to ambiguous initiatives such as “telling the brand’s story”. 

To keep the money rolling to the marketing department’s efforts, you need to be able to set some KPIs to show progress is being made. Below we outline different elements of brand marketing and some respective KPIs:

Brand Awareness

  • Description: Measures how familiar your target audience is with your brand.
  • How to Track: Surveys, social media monitoring, search volume data (Google Trends), and brand mentions.

Brand Equity

  • Description: The value of your brand in the market is often reflected in consumer perception of quality, loyalty, and awareness.
  • How to Track: Customer feedback, Net Promoter Score (NPS), and social sentiment analysis.

Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty

  • Description: Assesses how satisfied customers are with your brand and how likely they are to remain loyal.
  • How to Track: Customer satisfaction surveys, NPS, repeat purchase rate, and customer retention rates.

Engagement Rate

  • Description: Measures the level of interaction with your brand through various channels.
  • How to Track: Social media analytics for likes, shares, comments, website analytics for time on site, email open rate, newsletter sign-ups, and podcast downloads and bounce rate.

Share of Voice (SOV)

  • Description: The amount of the market your brand owns compared to your competitors, often measured across media channels.
  • How to Track: Media monitoring tools for social, online, and traditional media mentions compared to competitors.

Brand Marketing Tips

Invest in Tracking

It's important to invest both time and money in properly setting up tracking on the platforms that monitor your KPIs. Research what KPIs provide the most insight into your initiatives and regularly check in on these metrics. Data is your friend, especially when working on ambiguous and long-term campaigns.

Show, Don’t Tell

Once you identify your brand’s values, it is really easy to throw those terms around in your marketing materials when trying to communicate how your brand loves to “give back to the community.” The thing is, telling your audience will not convey this as much as showing your audience. 

Invest in campaigns that illustrate your brand living up to its values. For example, organizing an event for your employees to give back to the community and posting a video or picture of these efforts goes a lot further than simply stating, “We give back to the community”. 

Quality Over Quantity

Keeping a carefully curated brand identity will provide a better return than publishing anything and everything. A poorly produced commercial may do more harm than no commercial at all. Unfortunately, people typically notice the bad marketing moves more than the good, so focus on producing high-quality content first, and then speeding up the process once you have a good system.

Examples of Great Brand Marketing

When it comes to standout brand marketing strategies, the principles implemented transcend whether or not the company serves a B2B or B2C market. From Apple to Salesforce, utilizing elements like fostering a sense of community and continuous innovation are sure-fire ways to improve brand perception.

Below are a few examples of brands that you’re likely familiar with (case and point of good brand marketing) and some of the principles of brand marketing they’ve mastered:


  • Simplicity: Apple’s marketing and product design both emphasize simplicity, making technology accessible and easy to use.
  • Innovation as a Brand: Apple positions itself as a leader in innovation, focusing on groundbreaking products that set trends.
  • Brand Loyalty and Community: Apple has cultivated a strong community of loyal customers through a seamless ecosystem of products and exclusive services.


  • Customer Obsession: Amazon’s brand is built around being customer-centric, focusing on delivering exceptional customer service and convenience. 
  • Diverse Product Offering: Amazon markets itself as a one-stop shop for everything, leveraging its vast product range as a key differentiator.
  • Continuous Innovation: From AWS to Prime, Amazon is always looking for ways to innovate and improve the customer experience.


  • Environmental Activism: Patagonia’s brand is deeply rooted in environmental conservation, appealing to consumers who share these values.
  • Transparency: The company is known for its transparency regarding its supply chain and environmental impact, building trust with its customers.
  • Quality and Durability: Patagonia emphasizes the longevity of its products, aligning with its environmental mission by reducing waste.


  • Customer Success: Salesforce positions itself as a partner in its customers' success, focusing on providing solutions that drive business growth.
  • Innovation and Leadership in CRM: The brand is synonymous with CRM and cloud computing, emphasizing its role as an innovator in the tech industry.
  • Community and Integration: Salesforce has built a strong community around its platform, including developers, partners, and users, fostering a sense of belonging and loyalty.

The Future of B2B Marketing

The future of B2B marketing lies in generating real value for the user. You need to develop a distinct brand marketing strategy that cuts through the noise and speaks to the entirety of your target audience, not just the 3% ready to buy.

You should create a B2B media brand that produces industry thought leadership content through an omnichannel approach. This will not only generate top-of-funnel interest in your company, but it will turn your audience into fanatics. 

Hands in too many pots? We get it, marketers are BUSY. That’s what we’re here for. At Sweet Fish Media, we will fully manage the creation, development, and operations of your media brand. From producing your B2B podcast, ensuring a growing newsletter following, and drumming up excitement for your content on social media, we have you covered. 

To strengthen your brand marketing and increase demand generation, learn more about media brands and why Sweet Fish should be the one managing yours.