I am stating the obvious here, I know, but brand stands for more than just your logo. While there is no doubt that an organisations logo plays a part in representing this, a brand is much more determined by how you treat your customers & suppliers, style of language and, ultimately, the personality of the company, to name but a few.Traditionally, brand managers have been able to create and adapt brands using a wide range of marketing techniques. These mostly involve using expensive paid media and have been carefully sculpted by a team of marketing, product and legal professionals.I appreciate that this is a massive over generalisation, but the brand was created in a lab like environment in ‘ideal’ conditions.

The Social Web

So in the era of the social web, how has the likes of Facebook, blogs and Twitter impacted the creation and management of brands?

Well, for one, it has taken the brand out of the lab like conditions and stuck it firmly in the field. With customers now empowered, using a range of social media tools, to stand up against companies that over promise and under deliver, brand managers can no longer gloss over poor service or shoddy products.Furthermore, with information about these negative brand stories only a click away online, brand management has taken an interesting turn.

Social Media = making companies put their money where their mouth is!

With the additional complexities of managing a brand in the era of the social web, it has also presented brand managers with an exciting opportunity to put their money where their mouth is and take their brands to the next level.Social media’s unique ability to allow brand managers to listen, engage in conversation, support and energise a community offers organisation an opportunity to actually deliver on their brand values rather than just giving them lip service through expensive advertising.The era of the social brand here we come!Image via Flickr