At the heart of every successful company is a strong, consistent brand. But, building positive brand association from a single voice across touchpoints is no easy task. It requires meticulous planning, thoughtful coordination and vigorous training to ensure every person understands and is able to represent the brand. Enter the brand manager.
As the guardian of the brand, this role has become crucial for large organizations hoping to achieve brand loyalty. This post will answer the questions:
- What is a brand manager?
- What does a brand manager do?
- How do you become a brand manager?
- Who needs a brand manager?
What is a Brand Manager
According to The Branding Journal, brand managers “are responsible for ensuring that the products, services, and product lines that fall under their brand resonate with current and potential customers.”
The role of brand manager is ideal for any passionate marketing or creative professional who understands the power of a consistent brand and how important it is to the strength and longevity of a company. Brand managers have the important job of making sure brand assets are readily available and all brand activities are tied together with the same vision in mind. As we’ve learned in other posts, inconsistent brand activations can lead to brand dilution and customer confusion.
What Does a Brand Manager Do?
A huge part of the brand manager’s role is, as expected, in marketing. But, we describe brand managers as “guardians” of the brand, because they protect it in all areas - from product development to communications. One of the most important jobs of a brand is training - usually as part of the orientation and onboarding for any new hire. Effective brand training creates passionate employees at every level of an organization, who truly understand the brand vision and aim to communicate the brand values in everything they do. Everything an organization does should send the same brand messaging.
Other day-to-day tasks of a brand manager, according to MediaBistro, include:
- Researching the marketplace,
- Analyzing competitive positioning,
- Developing marketing strategies,
- Helping create templates for content,
- Overseeing promotional activities, and
- Evaluating how the brand can appeal to other audiences.
Depending on organizational structure, a brand manager usually works directly under a top-level leadership role in the marketing department, such as a VP of marketing or a marketing director, or even directly under a president or founder of a company. Working underneath the brand manager are typically roles like brand, content or social media coordinator.
How Do You Become a Brand Manager?
According to Indeed, the core skills a brand manager needs to have include:
- Creative strategy,
- Data analysis and
As with most marketing roles, brand managers need to have stellar writing skills and endless creativity. Writing for both long-form (think blogs and eBooks), as well as short-form content (think social media posts or ad copy) that conveys the brand voice and tone is a must-have skill. Research and analytical skills are also important to the role of brand manager, in order to stay up-to-date with marketing trends and technologies, plus being able to define what’s working and what’s not in a branding strategy.
The educational background for a brand manager typically includes a bachelor's degree in marketing, communications, business or advertising. It's also possible to have an education in other areas and still have the skills to do the job of a brand manager with proper training or work your way up through the ranks in a company from an entry-level position. There are some specific certifications out there, including a certified brand manager (CBM) program or certified product manager (CPM) that can help one become a brand manager.
In order to become a brand manager, earning specialized certifications on top of a relevant bachelor’s degree would be a great first step. Pursuing entry-level positions like brand coordinator, communications, PR, content or social media coordinator are a great way to get into the department and work your way up.
Who Needs a Brand Manager?
Almost any kind of company could benefit from employing a brand manager, but it’s not realistic for very small organizations or certain industries. Companies that have creative teams and marketing departments creating a large amount of content definitely need brand managers, in order to achieve consistency across all departments and within marketing initiatives.
Acting as the guardian for a brand is an extremely important role, as it impacts how the public views a company, what customers think about a company, and how employees understand the vision and goals of the company they work for. For brand managers, providing easy access to brand assets can be key to better marketing initiatives, cohesive communications efforts, employee satisfaction and even longevity of a company. See how MediaValet's Branded Portals can help brand managers distribute important brand assets.
MediaValet is a leader in cloud-based digital asset management that helps organizations manage, organize and share their digital assets, improving productivity and increasing ROI. See MediaValet in action today.