The 4-C's of Branding.

Consistency, Clarity, Constantly and Conversation

The first three have been around since the age of modern mass communication. However the last, conversation, is a recent addition. Before the advent of social media it was standard practice to avoid real communication that truly engaged the end-user. Thankfully today smart brand builders understand that it's the appropriation  of your company or product by your end user that builds strong brands.

So here are the modern C's of Branding.


Consistency in message, language, image, across all media and to all users.

Perception and Reality

The Brand is how people think of your company or product. Always be what you say you are. Eg> Volvo cars change from year to year and model to model, but the Brand is always about safety. Equally consistent. change. Madonna changes with every new album she produces.

Design & Message

The graphic design (images, colors, fonts, etc.) and the actual text of the message should be adapted from a master plan or blueprint and applied to each media with care and attention to developing the strength of the message specifically for each media. Eg> You can recognize a Dell Computer ad a mile away if you've ever been to their web site... the same font, same images and the same blue graphics everywhere.


Clarity in message, language, image, promise across all media and to all users. Strong brands are just as clear about what they are and aren't as what they are. There should be a strong link here to the promise value which will differentiate your product from the competition. Eg> Volvo has attracted and built a loyal customer base saying that they build secure cars — not luxury or sports or economy cars.


Constantly keep your brand and its promise in the user's mind. Always be on the mind of the target market. Eg> Coke, the world's strongest brand has a target market of anyone in the world who drinks. Big target market.You see Coke everywhere, from vending machines to coolers, to restaurant menus, to billboards. They are always there.


Conversations are far more useful and memorable than talking at people and by drawing your customers into the a conversation you can bring them closer - that is to say more loyal - to your brand. Converstations tell your brand story as much from your point-of-view as that of your end consumer and their peers. Eg> US President Barack Obama's 2008 election campaign showed the power and success of opening a converstation with the target audience.