Branding is simple in theory, complicated in practice. Part of that is because you need to figure out how you can convey to your customers who you are, and what you stand for, in a handful of seconds. Often with no more than a glance. That’s hard to do, but before you get too deep into analysis and market trends, you need to sit down and answer two very basic questions about your brand.
What does it say about us, as a business, and how are we communicating that?
Logo, Design, and Identity
If your business was a person, what words would people use to describe it? Are you reliable? Friendly? Thrifty? Fierce? Or are you something else entirely? You need to know what impression you want your customers to have of your business, and to make sure that impression is clear in the choices you make for your brand.
Once you’ve sketched out the impression you want to give, the next step is to ask how you’re going to convey it.
For example, Wal-Mart wants people to think of them as friendly, and helpful. Part of how they convey that image is the bright yellow smiley-face on their signs, and on their vests. That logo is instantly recognizable, and putting a cute, smiling face on the company is meant to immediately put customers at ease. Additionally, everything from their font choice (the soft cursive is meant to seem personal and authentic, as well as friendly) to their color palette (blue is a calming, welcoming color that reduces stress) is meant to give the impression of a chill, friendly place to shop.
Once you know how to recognize the patterns, you can see them everywhere. The symbol for the Dodge Viper is in red and black, the stark contrast creating a power combination. The fangs in it show danger, and power, with the impression that if you’re behind the wheel then it’s your power. By contrast, Ford’s hard-edged letters in their logo are meant to show strength, and endurance, with the silvered/chrome edges calling to mind the properties of high-quality steel.
Even if people aren’t making these associations consciously, that doesn’t mean they aren’t being affected by them. Which is why the message, and how you package it, can make or break your brand.
For more advice on how you can strengthen your brand, simply contact us today!