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Branding as Communication

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Susan B. Barnes

Once only a sign, technologies have helped to transform brands into symbols that we constantly encounter in our natural and mediated environments. Moreover, the branding of culture marks a commercialization of society. Almost everywhere we look, a brand name or logo appears.
By combining a scholarly approach with case studies and examples, this text bridges the worlds of communication and business by providing a single vocabulary in which to discuss branding. It brings these ideas together into a coherent framework to enable discussions on the topic to occur in a variety of disciplines. A number of perspectives are also provided, including brands as signs and symbols, brand personality, history, communication, cognitive factors, loyalty, personal branding, community, and social issues.
Providing a comprehensive overview of the branding process – from the creation of brands to analysis of their messages – readers will begin to understand the communicative impact of branding.
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Chapter 3. Branding as Communication

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BRANDING AS COMMUNICATION

The new paradigm suggests that having a sensory experience, such as seeing an advertisement, creates feeling in the body first, as opposed to thought. —Douglas Van Praet, 2012, p. 88

The branding communication process examines how people receive commercial information from brands. These messages are often created by an advertising agency to be communicated to the consumer. While an advertisement sends a message about the brand, understanding the branded message requires a deeper examination of the communication itself. Connotative rather than denotative messages can uncover the true message of the branded product or service and its personality. This chapter explores communication models for understanding branded messages.

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