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Branding Is Not A Logo Design

Microvista® LLC - Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A friend recently asked me, “what do you like more ice cream or gelato?” I responded that I like gelato. When I think of gelato, I think of the creamy texture, the sweet (but not too sweet) taste, and the aroma. Nine times out of ten I will choose gelato because it is simply delicious!

This question reminded me of an instance a couple of years ago; someone came up to me asked if I could help with their branding. I design logos but I wasn’t sure that I was the right person to help with their branding, since I knew that “branding” is not a logo design.

Then I offered a workshop which focused on planning your website, and sure enough, many of the attendees were confused about branding as well. So, to better understand what a brand is, I decided to go to the library and research the meaning of a brand.

Many of us use the word branding improperly. What we usually mean to say is “brand system” which includes name, symbol, color and/or slogan. A brand is an emotional perception that a company gets from its customers (positive or negative) based on the value that a customer receives from that company. For example, Apple is a company that gets two thumbs up from me because I perceive them to offer valuable products that are carefully designed with the customer in mind.

After finding that many were confused about this subject, I decided to help my clients with their brand strategy so that it can be reflected as a single message that will be carried out through his/her organization’s culture, communication, and values.

Simple recognition can be established by the name of a company, many people will make a purchase based on the brand name recognition. For example, there are people that will only purchase Honda automobiles because they perceive them to be good cars.

Creating and maintaining a “single message” brand strategy for your business:

  • Focus on a niche market or brand positioning.
  • Build a style guide for the company to manage its brand.
  • Promote the brand carefully with a single unifying message, both internally and externally.
  • Build a better customer experience by responding to the customers’ needs; this ensures a sustainable business.
  • Someone should be appointed to manage the brand, even to the point of working with a consulting company.

  • Monitor the branding results so that management can see what factors are affecting brand equity.

  • Be innovative with your brand.
  • Commit to socially responsible initiatives both inside and outside of the company.
  • Establish brand saturated marketing departments such as public relations, promotions, events, and special invitations.
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