Are markings really important in life

Why brands are so important

Ask five people what a brand is and you will get five answers. Some say that a brand is a logo, others that a brand is a claim or slogan, others say that a brand must above all be known and of high quality. None of this is wrong, but not even half the story. We will shed light on the subject of "brands" from our point of view.

What is a brand?

Defining a brand clearly is a real undertaking - we discovered that during our research. It is more of a tangible construct than something tangible. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is said to have once stated that a brand is what you tell when it is not in the room. In other words: a brand is a company's external image, a personal feeling about what it is.

The brand from a legal perspective

The German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA) defines a trademark as a mark of goods or services and, like patents, as the intellectual property of a company. It explains that it is primarily the (identification) symbols that can be used to distinguish them from other companies. According to the DPMA, a trademark must therefore have a certain depth of creativity and distinctive character in the market in order to be regarded as such. (If a trademark fulfills these characteristics, you can have an entry made in the German trademark register. Specialized patent and trademark attorneys will help with the application.)

The brand in the free economy

In addition to the purely legal approach as a mark of goods or services, there is also the economic one. A brand is an intangible good and represents an asset. According to an article by, the market economy is controlled by three big drivers: money, innovation and brands. So strong brands have great power. A brand is therefore an indicator of quality and top performance.

The brand in a linguistic context

The term brand comes from the act of “marking something”. So it means to mark something for someone or to differentiate it from other things. We know that wild animals mark their territory, that cattle breeders mark their animals and that we mark important places in books. A marking is therefore used for orientation.

What is a brand?

After examining what a brand is, we know that brands primarily serve to distinguish themselves, they provide orientation and are associated with excellent performance. They simplify our lives by guiding us. We trust them.

The brand in the company

However, a company or product is not automatically a brand - the market gives them this “label”. So to be a strong brand you have to earn yourself. That works when the company is consistently geared towards top performance and focuses on the customer. This makes it clear that the brand is not located in marketing within the company, but strategically and comprehensively in corporate development. The brand does not just start with the communication and external presentation of the products and services, it is rather an attitude, an attitude with which a company basically acts.

The brand as the essence of the company

Even if the brand is what the market says about a company, it can have a major impact on this way of thinking. As already stated, this is possible if a company aligns itself consistently with the market and becomes the needs of its target groups. But a brand must also be different and provide orientation. This is possible because a company focuses on its core competencies and clearly signals to the target group what it stands for. Brand development is therefore an internal process of self-awareness of strengths and potential as well as the strategic orientation towards precisely these competencies.

What makes a brand successful?

Successful brands know their customers and give them what they yearn for. What sounds so easy is a demanding path: But knowing the customer does not mean having a simple gut feeling. Today you know the target group by collecting their data and using it for your own context. This task and also the scanning of the market or competition is carried out by market research.

Brands create value

In the next step, a real demarcation from existing brands must be made. That doesn't mean that the products have to be innovative. Rather, this means that both the core values ​​of a company and the message to the target group must be differentiated from others in the market. The customer does not differentiate according to objective product features, but according to which feeling a (product) message triggers in him. Especially when features do not differ significantly from one another.

Brands are a statement

Anyone who used to wear a Rolex or drive a Porsche made it unmistakably clear that they had money. Wearing these luxury brands catapulted those directly into a kind of invisible club of those who wore and displayed such brands. The example is exaggerated, but also on a small scale and in less status-oriented cultures, belonging is an essential factor. Am I more of a Hugo Boss type or a Tommy Hilfiger type? But also: Am I more of the Pril type or the Frog type? Brands promise us more than high-quality products. They let us participate in their lifestyle, their values, their mission and vision. When I buy products with a certified eco-label, I have a certain expectation and trust and thus show what is personally important to me.

Brands lead the customer

"Does that fit our brand?" When companies focus their activities on development and consistent brand management, it pays off. Even as a corporate brand in a saturated market, it is possible to develop a niche. In the minds of the target group. Be different from your competition. Be brave. Edgy. Take a stand on global and local issues. Make a statement. Stand for something. Defend what you believe in. Work for a corporate purpose that is greater than the company itself. Let people inside and outside the company participate. Create a suction around your company. This is not only good for your internal cooperation, potential applicants also prefer to work for strong brands.

Become visible as a brand

The values ​​and drives, the mission and vision, the attitude of the company - all of this should be reflected in the look and feel of the brand. Invest in meaningful visual branding that represents you and clearly shows your target audience what you stand for. Develop your communication strategy in line with your brand. Formulate key messages and let us develop an emotional claim. Content marketing offers you the opportunity to appear as a brand. There you not only convey technical contributions in order to be perceived as a top provider. Above all, they present themselves as people. They not only become visible and tangible, but also step out of the mystery of the brand. We at alto. are happy to help you bring your brand identity to life.


Lena Küssner

Digital branding expert. Finds details important, but prefers to deal with the big picture. Speaks lively and in color. Write on the alto. Expert blog about brands, power and courage.