Brand - The set of physical attributes of a product or service, together with the beliefs and expectations surrounding it - a unique combination which the name or logo of the product or service should evoke in the mind of the audience. (Definition by Chartered Institute of Marketing)
Whilst many people may think that a brand is just the tangible visual elements such as a logo or strapline, it is so much more. It’s about creating a good impression in the mind of your audience – communicating how you want your organisation, product or service to be seen. It’s a combination of the ‘physical attributes’ along with the ‘beliefs and expectations’ - the intangible factors that convey your brand promise such as reliability, quality and customer service excellence that create an effective brand identity. Your people and your company values are also an integral part of your brand.
Yes, your logo plays an important part in creating that brand; if you don’t have a strong visual identity, it’s easy to get lost in the noise of all your competitors, however, it’s not the only thing to consider when developing your brand.
Before you even consider your logo, give some thought to the following:
Positioning: how you want to position your business or organisation – do you want to be top quality or cost effective, are you experts in your niche industry or a one stop shop?
Values: aligning your mission, vision and personality with values that benefit the customer. This is where your people come in – you need their genuine buy-in to uphold the values of the business and continually demonstrate them to the customer.
Customer Motivation: What are your customers looking for – not just in terms of a physical product /service – are they seeking reassurance and stability by coming to your organisation, or is it excitement and a feeling of sophistication that buying your product/service will deliver for them?
Once you’ve identified and solidified some of the above, then you have what’s needed to inform the development of a logo and strapline. You can create something that reflects these findings and will resonate with your audience.
When you have your logo (and strapline if desired) then you can move on to your messaging.
Remember that messaging is key to reinforcing the positive brand perception so it needs to be consistent. That doesn’t mean you have to use exactly the same words / phrases every time – different channels need different tones, so the content may alter, but the message you’re focusing on needs to remain consistent.
Don’t forget your internal audience!
When you’re establishing or consolidating your brand identity, don’t just consider your external customers; include your employees in communications and key messages – this will help to build the brand internally and reinforce the values and benefits of the brand. If you can’t live the brand internally, how can you deliver it externally?!
If you’d like to find out more about brand development or talk through any thoughts and ideas for your brand, get in touch – we’re happy to have a coffee and chat about all things brand-related!