Brand V/s Branding 

Naina Vaswani
Naina Vaswani
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In the intricate tapestry of business, the terms “brand” and “branding” often intertwine, yet their distinctions play pivotal roles in shaping a company’s identity and success. 

Let’s embark on a journey to understand these elements and their unique contributions to the business ecosystem.


At its core, a brand is not just a business; it’s an entity with a defined mission, purpose, and a rich narrative. Beyond the tangible products or services it offers, a brand consists of emotions, intimately connected to the individuals who brought the company into existence. 

A brand is a dynamic force that goes beyond transactional exchanges, seeking to establish lasting connections with its customers. It’s an emotional anchor that transforms a commodity into a cherished experience, fostering loyalty and trust in the hearts of consumers.


Branding is multifaceted, incorporating marketing and communication strategies to amplify its impact. It serves as the vehicle through which a brand communicates its story to a wider audience. 

This involves not only the creation of visually appealing logos but also orchestrating advertising campaigns and implementing digital marketing strategies.

Here is an example, to help you understand. 

Think of your own personality. Do you consider yourself an outgoing person? If so, that may be a part of your personality (brand). Now think of the things you do that contribute to being outgoing (branding) such as communicating with people, picking out your outfit that makes you stand out, being aware of good conversation starters. 

If you only do these things once, it doesn’t make you an outgoing person. They must be consistent habits to become a part of your personality. In the same way, the things you do to augment your brand must be consistent to be accepted as your business personality.

This brings us to our next segment 

Brand positioning 

Brand positioning is the distinct value forming a strategic marketing approach to define its identity and articulate its unique value proposition. This strategy aims to communicate why customers should choose the brand over alternatives. 

Companies utilise brand positioning to deliberately shape how they are perceived by their audiences, motivating connections between the brand and its core value proposition. This intentional effort is crucial for establishing a lasting and positive association in the minds of customers.

Let’s look at a case study

The Absolut Brand 

Absolut, a Swedish vodka brand founded by Lars Olsson Smith in 1879, is anchored in a set of core values that have defined its legacy of excellence and innovation. At the heart of Absolut’s ethos is an unwavering commitment to quality and purity, epitomised by Lars Olsson Smith’s groundbreaking continuous distillation method, known as rectification. This method not only revolutionised vodka production but also became the cornerstone of Absolut’s dedication to crafting a purer and smoother form of alcohol. The brand’s relentless pursuit of perfection is complemented by a spirit of innovation, as evidenced by Lars Olsson Smith’s forward-thinking approach, which continues to inspire the brand’s commitment to pushing boundaries and setting industry standards. Absolut’s core values reflect a harmonious blend of tradition, quality, and innovation, shaping its identity as a trailblazer in the world of premium vodka.

The Branding Concept

Absolut, originally was introduced as “Absolut Rent Brännvin” and marked the inception of a brand deeply rooted in a commitment to purity and quality. 

The Absolut Vodka logo is a distinctive and iconic design that has become synonymous with the brand. The logo has undergone subtle variations over the years, but certain elements have remained consistent.

The two words “Absolut” and “Vodka” are written in bold lettering in the iconic VIVID BLUE COLOR, to symbolise the clarity and purity. A big DOT at the end in bold to make a strong statement  

In the centre of the two words is the origin of vodka which is a pride factor for the brand. It’s written in a classic delicate cursive font. 

Brand Positioning

Absolut Vodka strategically sets itself apart from competitors in the vodka market through a diverse approach that encompasses distinctive branding, innovative marketing strategies, and unique product offerings. 

At the core of this strategy is a commitment to creativity and storytelling evident in renowned campaigns such as the “Absolut Perfection” and “In An Absolute World” series. These campaigns transcend traditional product advertising, weaving narratives that forge personal and emotional connections with consumers.

Furthermore, Absolut Vodka’s differentiation is amplified through its history of dynamic collaborations with artists, designers, and cultural influencers. These creative partnerships result in limited-edition bottles and bespoke marketing initiatives, solidifying the brand’s identity as a cultural and creative icon. 

In an industry where branding and artistic collaborations are pivotal differentiators, Absolut Vodka’s strategic emphasis on these ventures stands out, fostering a unique and compelling image.

In essence, Absolut Vodka’s strategic differentiation encompasses not only its commitment to quality and innovation but also its ability to craft narratives that resonate with consumers, coupled with impactful collaborations that elevate the brand into a cultural and creative force within the competitive vodka market.


In the exploration of Absolut Vodka’s journey, we witness a compelling embodiment of the distinct roles played by Brand, Branding, and Brand Positioning in shaping a brand’s identity. Absolut’s brand is not merely a label for its vodka; it’s a living entity with a rich history, rooted in a set of core values that transcend the transactional nature of its products. This essence forms the very soul of the brand, fostering emotional connections with consumers and transforming the act of consuming vodka into an experience deeply intertwined with tradition, quality, and innovation. Absolut Vodka’s brand, therefore, serves as the foundational compass that guides its overarching narrative and purpose, setting the stage for the interplay of branding elements that amplify its presence in the market.

The branding strategies employed by Absolut further illustrate the multifaceted nature of creating a brand narrative. From the iconic blue logo to innovative marketing campaigns, the visual and communicative elements of branding serve as the outward expressions of the brand’s core values. Consistency in these branding efforts not only reinforces Absolut’s identity but also crafts a recognizable and memorable image in the minds of consumers. The brand positioning, highlighted through creative collaborations and unique campaigns, is a deliberate and strategic effort to carve out a distinctive space in the competitive vodka market. Absolut’s case underscores the critical importance of understanding the nuanced interplay between brand, branding, and positioning, showcasing that a well-defined classification of these elements is not just a marketing strategy but an artful process of creating a brand narrative that resonates authentically with its audience.

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