The Importance and Benefits of a Strong Brand Identity
A powerful brand identity is far more than a pretty logo. Your logo is the sign on the front door. Being pretty might catch a potential customer’s eye, but unless it tells about your company and what you do, people may not come inside.
A logo that visually communicates your company’s goals and values will successfully invite the customer to “open the door”. The right colors, typography, and design elements will create strong positive associations for your customers, anchoring your business in the industry.
Why Is Brand Identity Important?
Your logo is composed of distinctive colors, fonts, and other design elements that stand out. Consistency and clarity build trust and brand recognition with your customers. Your look establishes a relationship with your customer. You want them to distinguish your brand from the competition – like seeing a friend’s face in a crowded room.
"Products are made in a factory but brands are created in the mind."
~ Walter Landor
This makes it really important not to have a “forgettable face.” Thoughtful branding defines your company’s function, goals, and greater purpose.
Strong brand identities are memorable. Think of an industry or category. Call to mind some companies operating in that space. Can you picture their logos?
A strong brand identity attracts customers, establishes your reputation, and carves out a niche for your company in the industry. Your visual identity is often the customer’s first impression of your company, so don’t let that go to waste. Form positive associations for current and future customers with a recognizable brand identity.
Examples of Great Brand Identities
Bundle Loan’s brand identity, designed by yours truly, is straightforward and uncomplicated. The imagery of a home in the “u” of the word Bundle communicates the company’s home lending program with simplicity. The name answers a common buyer persona question: how can I combine loans to manage my debt and efficiently make payments?
Headspace excels in simplicity and consistency with its minimalist logo design and bold primary colors. This design is a metaphor for the app’s purpose: Headspace makes meditation easy and simple. The orange dot logo symbolizes the result of meditation: a feeling of being centered and at peace.
How Do You Create a Brand Identity?
Now, what does it take to create a pretty and meaningful logo, and therefore brand identity? Well, it takes a bit of soul searching! By that, we mean you need to take a closer look at your company’s goals, mission, and purpose. Identify what makes your company tick and you’ll be able to bring forth imagery that fully represents your company and its values.
Here are a few questions to ponder:
- What’s your mission? Why do you do what you do?
- How would you describe your brand personality?
- Consider your values: what are your company’s foundational beliefs that make you show up at work each day?
- What makes your company different from the competition?
By answering these questions, you’ll paint your company’s identity in broad strokes, highlighting essential details for exploration. Now it’s time to go even deeper and explore how you portray your company’s values in a visual form.
This part can get a little tricky. We’re biased, but we think having an external, expert opinion can be really valuable. We’ve made the entire research and design process streamlined and centralized for easy access.
Your brand identity includes all its visual elements such as your logo, style, typography, and colors. These elements matter more than you may realize. Typography can represent trustworthiness, level of formality, and modernity. Even the color scheme communicates a lot:
- red and orange denote passion and energy
- purple exudes luxury
- blue evokes feelings of stability and tradition
Kind of a mindblowing amount of detail, right? If you want to explore what this means for your company, get in touch for a free consultation.
Remember to maintain consistency across your platforms and messages. Consistency forms loyal customers, lasting associations, and maximizes recall value. Remember, every interaction is an opportunity to cement your company’s brand identity into the customer’s minds.
What’s the Difference Between Brand Identity and Brand Image?
People often conflate brand identity and brand image, yet the two are quite distinct. Brand identity refers to your brand’s primarily visual elements, brand image relates to reputation and customer perception. How you conduct business, what industry you’re in, and your company’s unique operations will all guide you as you build your brand image.
Consider companies you admire: what makes them stand out? A good brand image goes beyond your logo and your company name. Your visual brand represents your company’s morals, aspirations, and quantifiable actions.
You want customers associating your brand identity with your products or services. You’ll build customer loyalty through a positive brand image. Creating your brand image is about highlighting elements of your business that help define your company’s personality.
As you consider how to highlight your business’ characteristics, tell stories that exemplify your company’s most important and defining pillars. Storytelling will help customers form positive associations, thus building your brand image organically and with transparency.
Storytelling, when done right, is a powerful method to build brand identity. Show, don’t tell, your company’s functions. Use your stories to tell customers why you do what you do and how that will help them. Storytelling addresses key hurdles of the buyer’s journey, helping customers see how your company will solve problems and answer questions.
What Not to Do When Creating a Brand Identity
You may feel rushed to design the perfect logo and website. However, take care to avoid some of the common pitfalls of creating a brand identity. Remember to research your competition, learn as much about your audience as possible, and remain consistent in your imagery.
There’s much to be gained from careful research about your industry. Take time to find out which brands are wildly successful, and consider why their brand identity stands out. Comb through their products, advertising, websites, and social channels to determine what works and what doesn’t. This will help you avoid common mistakes, and give you a deeper understanding of what makes a brand identity exceptional.
Along with researching the competition, you’ll also need a thorough audit of your target audience and customer base. Market research is essential for sales purposes and for knowing what kind of messaging will resonate with future customers. In your research, seek to understand your audience’s expectations, which brands they often choose, and cultural trends.
Finally, remain consistent across your messaging. This goes beyond visual in the colors and font you choose; it extends to how you communicate with your customers. Aim for the same narrative voice throughout your storytelling, whether it’s first-, second-, or third-person point of view.