The terms “brand” and “logo” are often used interchangeably. But though a logo can be the symbol of a business, it is not the entirety of a brand. In fact, creating a logo is just one small step toward developing a strong brand identity.
With millions, if not billions, of businesses trying to make a name for themselves, having a strong brand has become crucial for businesses to differentiate themselves from their competitors.
Originally, the term “brand” was used for referring to the mark that cattle ranchers “branded” on their cattle, the idea of a brand has evolved to encompass much more than just a name or a symbol.
Your brand, a vital part of your brand identity, is defined as a name or a type of product manufactured by a particular business.
What is brand identity?
A brand identity is made up of what your brand says, what your values are, how you communicate your product, and what you want people to feel when they interact it. Essentially, your brand identity is the personality of your business and a promise to your customers.
As Jeff Bezos says, “Branding is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.”
Your product leaves an impression on your customers long after you’ve made the sale. Brand identity is the process of shaping that impression.
A Brand Identity Example
When you hear the name Coca-Cola, you probably picture its well-known logo, shown above.
But you also might think of the polar bear, the color red, its “Share a Coke” campaign, or the classic ribbon-like imagery featured on its cans. Here are two things that comprise Coca-Cola’s brand identity:
- Coca-Cola’s brand identity begins with a red logo in script text. The red color elicits confidence in the person who drinks a Coke, while the script typeface is all about enjoyment. Coffee, for example, is a drink you have before work in the morning. Coca-Cola is a drink you enjoy when you’re done in the afternoon. This is the brand’s “face.”
- Coca-Cola prints its logo on a uniquely shaped bottle (it’s true, no other beverages have bottles exactly like it). This tells customers they’re not getting an imitation — this is the real thing. The brand develops credibility and trust this way.
This is what makes up the Coca-Cola brand, not just the logo of the business. We’ll talk more about these qualities in the section below.
Why is brand identity so important?
As the embodiment of almost everything your business is and does, according to Purely Branded, a brand “lives and evolves in the minds and hearts” of consumers. Its identity, therefore, is crucial to the business’s future.
So, if your brand is more than just its logo, how can you replicate what brands like Coca-Cola have done and tap these other elements of your business’s identity? Here are five components of a well-developed brand identity, and why it’s so important for you to develop them.
The “Face” of Your Business
For all intents and purposes, your brand’s logo is the “face” of your business. But that face should do more than just look cool or interesting — a logo’s contribution to brand identity is associative, too. It tells the public that [this image] means [the name of your company].
Credibility and Trust
Having a brand identity doesn’t just make your product more memorable; it makes your brand more authoritative in the marketplace. A brand that establishes a face, and maintains that face consistently over time, develops credibility among its competitors and trust among its customers.
A brand identity is a template for everything you would include on an advertisement for your business — whether that ad is in print, online, or a preroll commercial on YouTube. A brand with a face and industry credibility is well prepared to promote itself and make impressions on potential buyers.
Your Company’s Mission
When you create an identity for your brand, you’re giving it something to stand for. That, in turn, gives your company a purpose. We all know companies have mission statements, right? Well, you can’t have one without first giving your brand an identity.
Generating New Customers and Delighting Existing Ones
A brand identity — one with a face, trust, and a mission — attracts people who agree with what your brand has to offer. But once these people become customers, that same brand identity gives them a sense of belonging. A good product generates customers, but a good brand generates advocates.
Creating a memorable brand requires consistent use of type, color, images, and language, but it’s worth it. When consumers instantly recognise who you are and what you stand for all based on a logo, you’ve become more than just a name and a symbol.
We help businesses all the time! Creating and sometimes updating current branding to fall inline with the latest trends, that suit our client and their vision for the future of their business. We listen to their goals, values and asperations and use them as a blueprint to start brainstorming ideas and creating visuals.
Is branding for your company on your mind? Talk to us today to get a feel and idea of how we’d approach getting started.