Brand marketing is the long-term program of communication that explains your company’s values, personality, and mission. It’s how you market yourself to connect with your audience on an emotional level.

It’s different from product-specific marketing — for example, PPC campaigns, email newsletters, and other tactics that might be geared towards selling one specific product. Branding, however, is more about evoking positive feelings about your company as a whole. Often, the best marketing comes from telling your company’s story – for instance, this video ad by BMW when long-time CEO Dieter Zetsche retired.

Building a strong brand strategy starts with internal discovery: What does your company stand for? What’s your professional sense of style? What’s the name you want to be known by? Answer these questions internally, then bounce them off colleagues and mentors for feedback. Then, determine your target audience. This will help you determine what messaging to deliver that resonates with your audience.

Once you’ve built that foundation, the next steps are establishing your brand recognition and trust. Brand recognition is how well your audience can recall and recognize your business (either through your logo, tagline, jingle, or advertising) without seeing the actual business name. Branding can keep your business top-of-mind, increasing the likelihood that they’ll turn to you when it comes time for a new purchase.

Brand trust is how strongly your audience believes that your company can be trusted. This can be based on past experiences, customer reviews and ratings, or the way you interact with your audience online. It’s important to build brand trust because it can lead to loyalty, which will ultimately increase sales