The brand identity of a business is much more than just a logo. A brand identity acts as the face of your business; it represents your company’s values, services, ideas, tone of voice and personality. It can generate loyalty from your clients, differentiate you from your competitors and make your employees feel proud (or even honoured) to work for you.
What Is It?
Your brand could be described as “what people say about you when you’re not there”. It encapsulates your values and principles as a business and should run through everything you do – how you answer the phone, how your write your emails, everything. According to Mr Wikipedia (and when was he ever wrong?) the outward expression of a brand – including its name, trademark, communications, and visual appearance – is brand identity.
The strongest brand identities are instantly recognisable. Large companies like Apple, Coca Cola, Nike spend millions every year to promote and develop their brands, because they know it directly affects their sales and market share.
Brand identity includes elements such as colour, design, logo, name, symbol and taglines, but also involves intangibles such as thoughts, feelings and expectations. To reiterate, your brand is central to others’ perceptions of your offering as a business. It should act as a guideline underpinning every process and action you implement as a business or individual.
What Are The Benefits?
A well considered and developed brand identity offers many benefits, these include, but are in no way limited to:
• Differentiation from your competitors.
• Improved brand awareness.
• Consistent representation of brand values.
• Establishment of synergy throughout all communication methods.
• Generation of active buyers and brand advocates
• Brand loyalty and trust.
• Brand advocacy.
• Heightened credibility.
• Improved financial returns.
When it comes to creating your own brand identity, consider using the following devices:
• Logo: The symbol of your business.
• A tagline: This defines your business to your audience.
• Stationery: Letter-headed paper, business cards, etc.
• Marketing materials: Catalogues, promotional flyers, ePublications, websites etc.
• Products and packaging: What you’re selling and what packaging it comes in.
• Signage: For your office, car, etc.
• Emails: How you’ll brand your communication.