The Difference between a Business and Brand

business and brand

If you still use the terms business and brand as synonyms of each other, then it’s time to move miles away from that fallacy. Although many still believe the two to be same, neither does every business have a brand nor is every brand a business. The two is actually quite different and in today’s age when competition is growing fiercely every single day, it has become imperative to know the differences between these two. We’ll help you do exactly that.

First of all it’s important to know what a brand and a business are. This can be quite a tricky question to ask since the answer tends to differ from person to person unless they are quoting from Wikipedia – a brand is a “name, term, design, symbol or any other feature that identifies one seller’s product distinct from those of other sellers”. But is it just that? Even today, many feel that brand is just a fancy name of businesses that do well and thus, have a good reputation based on good quality products or services.


Of course, differentiation, reputation and quality are all needed for building and maintaining a strong brand. But what exactly is a brand? A brand basically tells everyone about yourself or your creation. It’s the image, identity or personality carried and projected by yourself or your business. There are 2 major types: personal brand and professional brand. Personal brand is what all of us carry, including how we talk, what we wear, and how the world sees us. On the other hand, professional brand what is reflected to the world by your business, such as logo, tagline and so on.

Messaging is the core element of branding which dictates what exactly you have to say and how to build relationships with customers. They focus on the emotional triggers which a brand needs to have to be effective which should be aligned with the actions of the brand. This creates a strong brand via consistent message and positive perception on people’s minds.

A business, on the other hand, revolves around profit. It’s just a company or an organization producing products or offering services. Although there are various kinds of companies, all of them aim to make a profit in order to survive at the very least. A business is actually an output of a brand, rather than the other way round. People tend to purchase from you only when they find your brand to be relevant and reliable.

This is why the business is often thought to be the body while the brand considered as the “mind, heart and soul” which helps the business to thrive. Of course, a business can survive without a brand but neither for long nor reaching its full potential. This is why most businesses tend to have a brand, whether it’s a strong or a weak one. A business is able to become a brand the moment it exceeds its category of origin and incorporates a certain idea, philosophy or core equity.

For instance, think of Procter & Gamble. A lot of people do not even know that it’s a massively successful business. However, most of them are familiar of the popular brands it produces and markets such as Tide, Gillette, Olay and Duracell and this is what makes them purchase from the business. These brands help people to quickly recognize and recall the products and have an emotional connection with them leading to repeat purchases.

Brands and businesses can often overlap too. A successful business can also be a successful brand. For example, a Coca Cola is not only a widely popular beverage or soft drink made of carbonated water which serves as a brand by being attached to the feeling of happiness but it’s also a multinational corporation which produces and markets other brands as well such as Dasani and Minute Maid. The same goes for brands such as Nike, Sony, Shell and Apple which are both popular brands as well as businesses.

So if you are going to sell any product or service or a line of them, ask yourself this very crucial question: is it a brand or a business that you are going to be focusing on? Now that you know the differences between the two, it shouldn’t be really difficult for you to answer that question, should it?