The Difference Between Branding and Marketing

Point blank - Branding is who you are and how you keep current fans. Marketing is how you build awareness and attract new followers.


Branding precedes and underlies any and all marketing efforts. It is the expression of your truth, the values of your business, and an internal look at how you want to be perceived by the world. By clearly defining who you are, your brand will begin to see revolutionary changes. Your branding is what makes you unique.

If you think about it, branding is a little bit like online dating. A little bit. You put your best foot forward with an engaging bio that represents your personality, which you pair with the best photos of yourself. When you meet in person, you always want to make a great first - and lasting - impression, in hopes that your personality will resonate with likeminded people. 

Likewise, your branding is what creates a connection and resonates with the consumer. It is your branding that will keep followers coming back for more. Keep in mind, branding is something you must do on a daily basis. In addition to how you physically brand yourself (colors, merchandise, logos, etc), every interaction, every transaction, every email sent, every team member must represent your brand. 


Marketing includes the tools you use to deliver the message about your brand. These tools are constantly evolving and changing due to technology and how the general public wants to receive information. This may include content, posters, social media, advertising campaigns, website, SEO, etc. 

When you choose your colors, logos, fonts, etc (branding) - remember they must first represent your brand, and secondly they play a significant role in your ongoing marketing efforts. Branding is at the core of your marketing strategy. While marketing constantly evolves, your brand at its core will remain constant and identifiable. You cannot successfully have one without the other. 


Understanding the difference between branding and marketing all comes down to conversions - or converting the average consumer into a loyal follower. If you create marketing campaigns with nothing more than a few keywords (i.e. your genre and name), your conversions will be low, because consumers are not connecting to you as a brand. 

It is possible to achieve some success without branding - but with branding - your success will be far greater. It is building from the ground up a foundation to which your business can stand on. 

Natalie RheaBranding, Marketing