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What’s More Important For Your Company – Marketing Or Branding?

Feature   |   Posted: 03/28/2023
Posted by: Motorhead Digital


Most people believe that marketing is what they should be pumping their money into. The more marketing you have, the better off your auto performance and restoration shop is. But what if we told you that this isn't the case?

If we asked you what was better, marketing or branding – what would you say?

Probably marketing, right?

Most people believe that marketing is what they should be pumping their money into. The more marketing you have, the better off your auto performance and restoration shop is. 

But what if we told you that this isn’t the case? 

Without solid branding, your marketing isn’t going to do as well as you hoped. 

We get asked ‘which is better: branding or marketing?’ a lot. So many shops are interested in knowing which is more important and which will bring in more leads to their business. But we can’t give you a definitive answer, not exactly anyway. 

If you want your marketing to work, you have to have a clear brand image for your business, and if you want your branding to be of any use, you have to set up a fantastic marketing campaign. 

But, for argument’s sake, if we had to pick one to focus on first – which is more important?

Today we’ll talk about that and show you what to prioritize when putting your budget together for the year.

What’s the difference between marketing and branding?

Okay, before we discuss which is more important for your auto performance and restoration shop, we should talk about what marketing and branding are.

If you already know the differences, skip to marketing vs. branding to get into all the juicy details. 

But for those who want a clear understanding, take a look at what marketing and branding are and how they’re different. 

What is marketing?

Marketing is everything you do to promote your products or advertise your services. It’s the strategy you create to ensure your company gets noticed online by your target audience. 

You use marketing to push your message, create demand for your shops products and services, and get more people interested in what you’re selling. 

By using well-thought-out advertising campaigns, your marketing gets you the attention your automotive aftermarket restoration and performance shop deserves. But marketing isn’t just advertisements. It involves everything you need to attract and retain customers for your auto performance and restoration shop. 

Great marketing isn’t just throwing money into Facebook or Google Ads. It’s creating a strategy that specifically targets your audience so you can get as many interested clients as possible. 

What is branding?

Branding is the heart and soul of your company. When you take your company’s personality and apply it to your website, marketing, social media, advertising, blog posts, and anywhere else your audience interacts with your business. 

When you create a recognizable brand, you create an image for your company online. You’re showing your audience what you’re like, what you stand for, and ultimately attract the right customers to you. 

This shapes how your potential clients see you and how they view your company and the products and services you sell. 

Marketing is ideal for attracting leads, but your branding turns your leads into clients. It’s a strategy that shows your audience that you are a trustworthy and authentic company. 

For example, our branding consists of our two logos and our corvette mascot Stinger. The colors and fonts we use are also important to our branding but not as important as our voice and our niche. 

We help shops in the auto restoration and performance industry improve their online presence and get the attention they deserve to expand and enhance their business online. 

Our branding is familiar to our audience and helps them realize that we’re a company that’s dedicated to helping shops like them grow online. 

So, now you know what marketing and branding are, it’s time to get to the big question. 

Which is better?

Marketing vs branding: which is more important?

You can’t market your business online without having a solid brand. 

You simply can’t. 


Because without branding in your corner, all your marketing will come across as uninteresting, boring, and potentially untrustworthy!

Marketing without a solid brand is almost the same as buying a car from a dodgy dealer. You don’t know anything about the seller, and without branding, your audience won’t know a thing about you. They won’t know what you’re great at, what you can offer them, and why they should trust you. 

So, when it comes to the question of which is ‘better,’ we’d lean towards branding first if you don’t have your branding and messaging nailed down. Branding will always be more important than your marketing because branding is what makes your marketing unique. It’s what makes you a trustworthy and authentic company. Plus, 81% of consumers need to trust a brand before buying from one. 

However, your company can’t live on just branding. 

Without marketing, your branding is just who you are. It might be the heart of your auto restoration business, but marketing is necessary to help you sell your products. 

So with this in mind – where do you start?

Follow these three steps to learn where to put your money first in branding and marketing. 

1. Build your branding

Before you do anything else, you should figure out your branding and build a good brand foundation. 

Nothing will go right for your business in terms of marketing if you don’t know the following:

  • Who you are
  • What you stand for
  • How you sound online 

By building a clear brand foundation for your company, you’ll be able to make a solid marketing campaign that secures high-quality clients. 

But what do you need to start building a brand?

We’d suggest starting by learning:

  • What your company stands for – your messaging, goals and values
  • Why should people work with you – what’s your USP (unique selling proposition)?
  • How do you talk online –  are you formal or informal?
  • Who your audience is – build a customer persona 
  • What your brand looks like – colors, typography, photos, logo

Once you’ve figured out all this, you can create a brand guideline document to help you stay consistent across all your touchpoints. 

The key to a successful brand is consistency, and having a consistent brand can increase revenue by 10-20%.

2. Create your website

Now that your branding is sorted, it’s time to move on to your marketing! Right?

Not quite. 

You’ve got your branding figured out, but you have to put it somewhere. You have to show your audience your whole new look and personality. To do this, you need a website. 

Your website is critical to showing your branding to your audience. It’s your number one sales guy who’s there 24/7. By putting your brand’s personality all over your site, you’ll appear as a more authentic and trustworthy business. 

But you need a website that matches your branding to capture any leads. 

This is because when somebody finds your products and visits your website, they expect to see a high-quality site. If they load up your home page only to find an unusable, unfriendly webpage, they might leave before checking out what you have to offer! 

If you already have a website, consider giving it a refresh with the following…

Please head on over to the Motorhead Digital Blog for the rest of this article.

The Motorhead Digital team are digital marketing expert with over 25 years of experience. They’re focused on supporting automotive aftermarket restoration, performance, and race shops. Their signature Site, Location, and Maximizer™ programs will supercharge your digital marketing including website design, social media, SEO search engine rank, content marketing, and your entire online presence so you attract better leads who want to spend more money with you. You can reach Motorhead Digital at (585) 766-9785via email, or online at

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1191 Garnsey Road
Palmyra, NY, 14522
(585) 766-9785
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