Corporate branding refers to the practice of promoting the brand name of a corporate entity, as opposed to specific products or services.
The ways in which corporate brands and other brands interact is known as the corporate brand architecture.
The activities and thinking that go into corporate branding are different from product and service branding because the scope of a corporate brand is typically much broader. It should also be noted that while corporate branding is a distinct activity from product or service branding, these different forms of branding can, and often do, take place side-by-side within a given corporation.
Corporate branding affects multiple stakeholders (e.g. employees, investors) and impacts many aspects of companies such as the evaluation of their product and services, corporate identity and culture, sponsorship, employment applications, brand extensions. It also facilitates new product development because potential buyers are already familiar with the name. However, this strategy may hinder the creation of distinct brand images or identities for different products: an overarching corporate brand reduces the ability to position of a brand with an individual identity, and may conceal different products’ unique characteristics.
Corporate branding is not limited to a specific mark or name. Branding can incorporate multiple touchpoints . These touchpoints include; logo, customer service, treatment and training of employees, packaging, advertising, stationery, and quality of products and services.
It has been argued that successful corporate branding often stems from a strong coherence between what the company’s top management seek to accomplish (their strategic vision), what the company’s employees know and believe (lodged in its organization culture), and how its external stakeholders perceived the company (their image of it). Misalignments between these three factors, may indicate an underperforming corporate brand.