Ready for your reading? We’ve collected some of our favorite articles about branding from a variety of sources around the web. Bookmark it and let us know if you have questions! We’d be happy to sit down and talk about how you can make the advice work for your small business.

  1. Why Tom Cruise Should Be Your Content Strategist 
    [Portent] “Mr. Cruise delivers to his core audience while attracting new fans with moderately risky creative choices, still keeping himself fresh for critics and colleagues with strategic, iconoclastic roles that challenge the core Cruise brand.”
  2. 3 Strategies to Create a Cult Following for Your Business [Entrepreneur] “If you follow Taylor Swift on social media, you’ll see her and all her glamorous friends singing “Blank Space” in front of 60,000 people. But you’ll also see her post photos of her first gig, on just a small fold-out stage in a park with a flimsy banner that just says ‘Taylor Swift’ in red font.”
  3.  The Difference Between Marketing and Branding [Tron Vig Group] “Branding should both precede and underlie any marketing effort. Branding is not push, but pull. Branding is the expression of the essential truth or value of an organization, product, or service.”
  4. Your Brand is So Much More Than Just Your Name [Inc., video]
  5. How Tesla, Under Armor, and Sonos Do Branding [Harvard Business Review] “Whereas brands have traditionally used a one-message-fits-all approach, disruptive brandtech companies do the opposite: they engage consumers using content that is distributed, consumed, and shared on a variety of digital platforms.”
  6. Branding 101 [American Express] “The first step if you want to hit a single in building your brand is to actually know what your brand equals or what you want it to equal.”
  7. How to Effectively Brand Yourself — Regardless of Budget [Huffington Post] “If there is any step of your branding you don’t want to skimp on, it’s your logo. Is it eye-catching? Does it look too similar to other brands?”
  8. 5 Reasons You’ve Failed as an Entrepreneur [Entrepreneur] “While you might think this is the only way to get things done right, your need for control may be standing in the way of real success, not to mention a little breathing room.”
  9. Brands Aren’t Dead, But Traditional Branding Tools Are Dying [Harvard Business Review] “If brands are truly unimportant in a digital world, why is it so brand dominated? Why do so many people choose Google search over Bing when only experts can tell which has the most accurate results? Why has Apple become the most valuable company in the world with over-priced products and inferior functionality?”
  10. Creative Ways to Build Your Business’ Brand [Duct Tape Marketing] “When we think about branding for business, we tend to consider only the most obvious examples such as our logos, names, perhaps the basic design and layout of our website. In doing so, however, we are neglecting all of the different customer interaction points through which we can establish our brand.”
  11. Successful Small Business Branding [Guardian] “The best brands are natural things, whose meaning grows organically over time. They’re authentic, growing out of the reality of their company or product.”
  12. 7 Stupid Branding Mistakes Your Small Business is Making {Entrepreneur] “So you’ve sat down, crafted careful brand guidelines and begun implementing them across all of your company’s marketing materials and online properties.  But two months down the road, you need to create a new ad for a product line you’re launching, and it’d be really great if you could use a few colors outside of the palette you specified out in your branding documentation.”
  13. The Branding Power of the Prank [Harvard Business Review] “Amidst all the fun, some killjoys have started raising the question: Just because youcan prank the public, does that mean you should? As many have hinted or outright said: Shouldn’t you be, um, working?”
  14. The Best In Small Business Branding [Wired] “You’re likely familiar with this type of shopper (heck, in some form or another you probably are one): A curator-consumer is someone who prefers Marvis toothpaste over Crest, Mast Brothers chocolate to Hershey’s, and Mrs. Meyers to Dawn.”
  15. Branding In the Digital Age: A Practical Application [Harvard Business Review] “Edelman’s description of consumers’ digitally enabled ‘decision journeys’ sparked a lot of discussion among readers, who asked questions about how to get started, where to find the right data, and whether the journey could be applied to B2B companies as well.”

Note: Featured image is from #14 on this list, Wired, and features Monterrey, Mexico construction company Maderista, whose specialty is custom furniture from fine woods. Photo by Gestalten.