Maybe its the flag of your country, perhaps it's a sports team, a particular smell, a combination of colors or an exclusive icon or figure that makes you feel part of something - for me, that is the definition of branding.
There are different types of branding, such as political branding, corporate branding, or personal branding. Still, the common denominator is that they all give a sense of belonging to an individual or a group of people.
The most common type of branding is corporate branding.
We live in an era where the purchase decision doesn't only come down to the price tag. Consumers look for brands that represent those same values that they stand for. It doesn't necessarily mean that the company makes large donations to a charity but simple things like treating their employees and customers the right way and processing their waste accordingly.
They are willing to pay those extra bucks to know that by doing so, they're supporting a group of people that represents the same ideals and values that they do.
Loyalty nowadays is not only about giving points and gaining benefits. Loyalty is a symphony where each instrument plays a crucial part in the song that we "perform" for the world. And the audience becomes so passionate about this "song" that they're willing to donate their most valuable asset to the cause - their time. They will become "brand ambassadors," defending any scandal on social media or even wearing company merchandise and recommending the brand to everyone that they come in touch with.
Back in the days where song artists had covers for their albums, these covers were the representation of their songs. Today, the cover of our album is our brand, and each product that we have is a song.