What is Branding?
Updated: Jun 26, 2018
In my second blog post, "5 Reasons Why Graphic Design Matters" I touch on the term, 'brand identity'. So, I thought I'd go into more detail as to what branding exactly is. Many people think a company's brand is just a logo, but this is a common misconception. What is branding to you?
Branding is the personality of your company. It's the perception or feeling a customer walks away with after encountering or interacting with your business whether or not they've purchased your products or services. Branding is the meaning or value you provide to your customers.
Your company name
voice or tone of your message
brand identity (which includes logo)
Seth Godin defines a brand as a set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that account for a customer’s decision to choose your product or service over another.
Why does your brand matter?
Your brand matters because it is the essence of what keeps customers coming back to you. John Jantsch describes branding as the art of becoming knowable, likeable and trustable. I like to think of it as a way to make customers loyal to you. Give your customers a reason to be loyal.
Your brand sets you apart from other companies. In order to stand out from the rest, your brand has to be unique and memorable. This can be done by consistently providing a positive brand experience which establishes trust, provides value, is unique, and memorable.
Your brand is how others perceive you
Your brand is how others perceive you, not how YOU perceive your company. You can’t make people perceive you the way you want. Their perception will always be at least a little different to how you perceive yourself. But you can shape how others perceive you.
Establishing a reputation for quality is not just merely saying you do or will. You have to deliver on a consistent basis. A good brand is accomplished through a well thought out process or strategy of how you would like your company to be seen.
In order to shape how others perceive you, you have to know your target audience. Once you establish who your main audience is, you can then determine how to most effectively connect with them. You have to ask your self, "What kind of perceptions do I want potential clients or customers to walk away with?" and "How do I communicate with to my customers so they come away with these perceptions?"
What is brand identity?
So how does brand identity play into all this? While your brand is the personality of your company, your brand identity is the face of your business. The brand identity is how you want customers to perceive you. This includes the logo, color palette, fonts, and visual imagery used throughout your marketing materials. It is the visual that represents your company.
A graphic designer will understand and craft the brand identity concepts needed to attract, engage, and keep customers coming back. They can help develop a strategy of how the design can consistently connect with your target audience.
A graphic designer cannot make your brand. Although, one might provide advice or guidance on how to shape it. A graphic designer plays an integral part in crafting your organization's brand identity. They can help you consistently market your brand in a way that will make you stand out, establish trust and grow your company.
Is your brand and brand identity growing your business? Let's chat!