[Infographic] The Ultimate Guide to Creating a Brand Identity for Every Business

The Ultimate Guide to Creating a Brand Identity for Every Business 600x300

 

According to Business Dictionary, brand identity is the “visible elements of a brand that together identify and distinguish the brand in the consumers’ mind.”

 

However, your brand identity is more than just the logos and colors you use on your website or how you leverage print design services. It’s how you differentiate yourself from your competitors and convey your brand’s message to your audience. It’s how your market perceives your product. It represents the promise of your company.

 

A strong brand identity not only set you apart from other brands but it also establishes your credibility. As a result, brand loyalty is improved, and customers would prefer your brand over others.

 

There’s a certain prestige to your brand name that customers would be proud to own your products or avail of your services. In the long run, a strong brand identity will help your business reap profit and revenue.

 

But, where and how do you start creating and building your brand identity? Here are the things you need to know.

 

June 2018 infographic_The Ultimate Guide to Creating a Brand Identity for Every Business

 

Key Components of Branding

Before you start creating the elements of your brand identity, it’s crucial to have a solid grasp of your brand components because they tell you what your brand stands for.

 

There are four key components of brand identity: mission-vision, target audience, brand personality, and core values. These components will guide you in creating the tangible elements of your brand.

 

Ask yourself why your brand exists, what you want to achieve, and where you want your brand to go.

 

Define your target market. Who are your customers and why do they need you? Include details that will help you determine how, when, and where you can best reach your target audience.

 

Describe your brand personality. List down three to five adjectives that best describe your brand. Are you classy and sophisticated? Are you quirky and fun? You can also list down up to five adjectives that your brand is not. This will help you delineate what you want your brand to be and what you want to avoid in your brand identity creation.

 

Determine the core principle and values of your brand. What guides your business decisions? These guiding principles will help you and your team members to stay aligned with the brand personality, core values, and mission-vision.

 

Key Principles of a Strong Brand Identity

A strong brand identity is well-thought out and should embody the following principles.

  • It’s distinct. It should be unique and should stand out from other brands. Your brand should be able to catch the attention of your target market.
  • It’s memorable. It should have a visual impact and brand recall. When people see or hear your brand, they should be able to know and remember your products and services. Take McDonald’s, for instance. Kids can immediately recognize what the yellow “M” refers to.
  • It’s scalable and flexible. Your brand identity should evolve with your brand as your business grows.
  • It’s cohesive. Your brand identity should tell a single story. No more, no less. Each element should complement every other aspect of your brand identity.
  • It’s easy to apply. Think about the different collaterals and materials where you need to apply your brand identity and its elements. You and your team should be able to use them in different scenarios and needs intuitively.

Key Elements of Branding

The key elements pertain to the physical aspects of your brand identity including your logo, color palette, typography, images and photography, and voice and tone. For each and every element, there are specific guidelines and restrictions that you need to observe, such as clear spacing, size requirements, color codes, and more.

 

These elements are the assets you will use in creating any material for your business, be it a website, print collateral, letters, or reports. These assets will then determine how you communicate your brand identity to your target market.

  • Logo

As the visual representation of your brand, your logo is the most important element. It’s a graphic element that serves as the visual signature of your brand. Observe proper clear space between the logo and other graphic elements and size requirements for print and digital use.

 

Indicate clearly how you intend your logo to be used in various environments to prevent stretching, altering, condensing, or re-aligning.

  • Color Palette

Colors evoke emotions in people, so it’s important to choose colors that encourage positive feelings. Ensure a proper color match by using the colors’ Pantone name and number. Use CMYK for print materials, and RGB and HEX codes for digital color.

  • Typography

Typography makes it easier for audiences to absorb information and recognize brand identity.

 

It’s common practice for designers to use one font family, but some brands require multiple brand fonts. Generally, it’s a good idea to use a different font than the one in your logo so that your typography stands out.

 

Observe the typographic hierarchy to isolate and emphasize important information. Adjust your font size, weight, and style and play with orientation, positioning, and spacing.

  • Images / Photography

For every brand identity, there are specific images that work best. Define the do’s and don’ts when it comes to your images. Using the right photos will strengthen the personal and emotional relationship you have with your customers.

 

Remember, a striking imagery or photography helps you make a good first impression and establish your brand personality and identity. When used correctly, images convey your brand message instantly.

  • Voice / Tone

Having a consistent voice and tone for all your copy makes a huge difference in defining your brand identity. It’s how you speak to your target market, after all. Do you want to use a fun and cheeky tone or does your brand require a more professional and formal one?

 

How to Tell if Your Brand Identity Makes a Good First Impression

Now that you’ve designed the visual aspects of your brand, it’s time for you to determine whether your brand identity is making a good first impression.

  1. Do the glance test. Print out your design and pull it up on your monitor. Leave the room and do something else for an hour, then go back and look at your design. Try to look at it as if you’re seeing it for the first time. It’s hard, but after resting for a bit, you may find elements that jump out at you or minute details you missed before.
  2. Study the different elements of your design from your target market’s perspective. Take it apart piece by piece. Look at the logo, typography, images, and editorial style separately, then together. Are they cohesive and consistent with each other? Think about what your target audience would want to see.
  3. Compare your materials against competitors. Do competitor benchmarking. Check the brand identity of your main competitors and businesses in the same niche. What sets you apart? Do your visual elements stand out?
  4. Ask clients, prospective customers, and people who fit your target market what they think. Conducting a focus group discussion or a survey is a more accurate way of determining whether your brand identity makes a good first impression. You can also interview people who belong to your demographic and target market what they think.

Final Tips

Remember, if your target market can’t relate to your brand identity, then it means that you missed a step right in the beginning. Make sure to get it right so that you don’t have to rebrand and start all over again. Investing in a strong brand identity is the first step to a successful business.

 

Work with a branding agency in the Philippines to be sure that your brand identity and all its key elements will help you reach out to your target audience, encourage them to stay loyal to your brand, and ultimately, help you grow your business.