Creating specific promotions and branding efforts for your business can pay big dividends if they are part of a coordinated marketing effort that includes creating a unique selling benefit for a specific target customer. Understanding the basics of promotion and brand-management theory will help you effectively incorporate both into your selling strategies.
Branding is the practice of maintaining a specific image in the marketplace with the type of product you sell, packaging you use, communications you send, pricing you offer and places you sell. All of these are aimed at attracting a specific target customer. A basic example of a brand strategy is a restaurant that creates an upscale brand by using linen tablecloths, having well-dressed servers and not offering coupons or buy-one-get-one-free deals.
Some business use the word "promotions" to cover the gamut of marketing activities, but in its more narrow sense it refers to direct producer-to-consumer marketing activities, such as discounts, sales, rebates, sponsorships and endorsements. Promotions are often have a limited time duration. Promotions differ from advertising, which is a paid message in the media you control, and public relations, which is news you deliver to the media in the hopes they'll print or broadcast it.