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Brand posted and people walking looking and identified it

The origins of branding

Peter O'Leary 06 Dec 2017 • 1 min read

The modern word Brand is derived “Brandr”, an ancient Norse word meaning “to burn”. Its early use was to signify ownership (i.e. this cattle belongs to me!). Over time the Brand gained more meaning. When recognising the Brand, not only could you identify the Owner but also the origin and often make a determination on quality.   

The same attributes make branding powerfully effective today. For Brand to deliver, there are two key elements ended - we need to know the Mark (or distinctive brand asset) and what it means (a link to some meaningful information).

For example - WD-40 is a multi-use product with more than 2000 uses. It's distinctive blue and yellow shield, red cap and straw are known all over the world. When do you think of WD-40? When the tap is stuck or the door hinge squeaks or when someone has written on the wall with crayon? (WD-40 is the answer for all.) 

Context plays a major role in how our human minds store and retrieve data. If you don’t have context, the brand message isn’t connected.

Find out more about the AMBA Branding Strategy system here.