What is branding?
In a nutshell, branding is there to reflect the true values the company is bringing to the market. It should also differentiate and elevate your business from your competitors.
So how do you go about ‘branding’ a business? It’s not just about the logo, or what fonts and colours to use. It is so much more. A brand is a perceived image of the overall experience you have. That’s why brand strategy, along with defining a brands’ visual identity is important. Read more about our full branding process and a few of our branding tips.
There are a few steps to follow when branding a business :
Why do you need branding?
Without branding, establishing meaningful connections with your audience is hard. By creating a brand with soul, an authentic brand, it can make meaningful connections. Going to the heart of the brand can only achieve this.
You need to find what the brand should stand for, and what it should stand against. This is done to pinpoint the true purpose of the brand, its positioning, and establish a personality that is reflective of the brand values. By defining and establishing a clear brand, your brand will become impossible to ignore.
Branding terms explained
A brand is formed by how it is perceived based on the overall experience. This perceived image is an emotional image. It is the sum of all the feelings, attitudes and perceptions that people have. This includes both tangible and intangible characteristics of a company, product or service.
Branding is the actions taken to build a certain image of your company, product or service.
Brand strategy is the verbalisation of a brand set out in a long-term plan to achieve the business goals. Elements to establish within brand strategy include things like; brand values, tone of voice, perceptions, target audience, competitors, vision and mission, positioning, purpose and personality.
Brand identity / Corporate identity / Visual identity
Brand identity, or corporate identity or visual identity, which it is sometimes referred to, are very similar things. A corporate identity refers to the perception of the entire company, whereas a brand identity could just be a single product or service that a company provides. So one business could have many different brand identities for it’s different products or services but only one overall corporate identity.
The term visual identity can be used for both brand and company. A visual identity is the collection of all visual and tangible elements that together create the brand/corporate image.
A visual identity can consist of elements such as the logo, colour palette, typography, font usage, imagery such as photography, illustration, iconography and layout.
Inconsistent or non-existent use of a brands visual identity will result in a less than optimal brand perception. Brand guidelines are there to help ensure a consistent and ‘on-brand’ visual identity execution, and shows how all the elements should be implemented.
A logo identifies the business/product/service it its simplest form via the use of a brandmark, wordmark or combination of both. But a logo alone is unlikely to add sufficient value to a business. Logos in general are only meaningful in context. The logo, the brand strategy, the tone of voice, the visual identity and guidelines all together play a part in establishing the brand image.