When starting or revamping a company, most people believe they need a logo and a website. They also understand the need for marketing and advertising. Without branding though, there would be no way to develop an effective logo, website, or advertising.
Branding is the process of formalizing the promises you make to customers, and how you differ from your competition. It usually starts with a mission statement. Clear language explaining who you are and what you value allows us to develop visible representations of your company, including a logo and website.
Organizations who skip the branding step, end up with a logo, website, advertising, which don't go together. The branding step typically ends with a style guide which can be used by graphic designers for years to come, saving time and money.