It seems you have arrived. You have aÂ logo, a clever company name, website, and maybe even a Facebook page. What aboutÂ branding? Many new business owners believe that a logo and the company name together are the branding â€“ not true.
A logo is sign, stamp, or insignia that visually identifies who you are. It is a symbolic representation of your company. It is your brand logo. Whatever your business concept or organisation stands for (selling, producing, etc.); theÂ brand logoÂ is a lasting identifier to consumers, unless you decide to change it. Developing a logo should not be taken lightly. Many ill-conceived designs have been viewed with a question mark of thought. So much so that the consumer can be distracted by it and what your business is offering. Invest the time and the talents of a good graphic designer in order to sync what your business is about with the logo. Once your logo is established, do not be afraid to change it as your business evolves and the business philosophy changes. The flexibility to change, if necessary, is a part of solidifying your identity and the characteristics of the business. In addition, avoid getting stuck in a logo rut in thinking logo modification is equal to rebranding.Â RebrandingÂ is re-evaluating everything about your company that touches the outside world. It relates mostly to everything external as opposed to internal (e.g., operations) and how it is perceived by consumers in order to make it better. Remember to carry the logo over into other forms of marketing (e.g.,Â signs,Â banners, business cards, etc.).
AÂ brandÂ distinguishes one business from another. In addition to the logo, a brand incorporates a companyâ€™s:
- About us / Personality
It is the process of bringing all of these elements together in order to validate who you are and distinguish your business from competitors.
Do not assume every consumer will like your branding, or your logo. In the same way you strategise your product or service, you should strategise your branding. Use your target market information to influence your branding direction. The business logo, image, and packaging need to make a connection to your intended audience. One of the biggest example is Apple. Â Their branding and packaging is highly driven by end-users (Mac users). Â The entire branding itself does not change, but evolves into lasting identifiable branding that makes a connection to consumers, whether they are Mac users or not.
To minimise confusion, your logo is a part of your identity. YourÂ identityÂ is a part of your brand. Â The brand is how consumers see your business. Your brand is the advertisement that says, â€œOver here! Pay attention to me!â€ Have you ever browsed a website to find that the products and services are there, but you find yourself moving on to a similar website? Whether you know it or not, this is due in part to a lack of branding. There was nothing there outside of the services and products that grabbed your attention and motivated you to stay. Â More specifically, this is your identity within the branding. The website is more than just a place to hold information and sell. When conceptualising it, think about:
- The layout, colours, fonts, etc. â€“ Are they in line with your companyâ€™s <marketing> materials?
- The logo â€“ Does it fit well into the overall scheme?
- The products â€“ Does the website compliment the packaging?
- Is there a visual connection between the website, and physical materials such as brochures, inserts, and other company overview materials?
Answering these types of questions will establish a smooth connection between the logo (identity) and branding. Hopefully, it will also promote better strategising in your ability to address the details of how your business is presented to consumers.