Your logo is just the tip of the iceberg!

Building a Brand Identity

A successful brand comes down to much more than just your logo, yet so many new businesses make the mistake of overlooking the finer details. Your Brand Identity is built on the total experience that your business offers; the visual aspects of your business, as well as the actual customer experience are all key to how your brand is perceived.

Essentially, everything you do in the public eye contributes to how your target market sees you as a company. To help you show your brand in the right light, we broke down branding into five key subjects to consider:

Visual Communication

Visuals involve so much more than just your company’s logo. A brand’s visuals are everything the customer sees – the design of your website, the business cards you hand out, the menus on your tables, the posters in your window, even down to the paint on your front door.

The visuals you use in your branding gives you the opportunity to stand out from your competitors and show off your company’s unique personality.

Tip: Perform an Image Audit; collect everything that carries your logo or business image: your letterhead, business cards, promotional flyers, photos of signage, snapshots of web pages, emails etc. Lay them out on a table, step back and look at them while imagining that you’ve never seen them before. What do you see?

If your stationery, marketing and website design are inconsistent and show different brand elements this can portray mixed messages of an unorganised and unreliable company.

Colour & Font

Colour can say a huge amount about a brand – possibly without your customers even realising it! A logical mind will know that just because a brand’s logo is red does not mean that they are dangerous. However, using a large amount of red in your branding can create subconscious feelings of urgency – perhaps not the best choice if you are advertising relaxing spa treatments!

Tip: Research ‘Colour Psychology’ to learn about the emotional effects of colour. Use this new knowledge to assess whether the colours used in your branding arouse the right feelings in your clients.

Typography is deemed an artform in its own right, so fonts are incredibly useful tools that are often overlooked. A customer can make an unconscious judgement about a company from the fonts used, just as quickly as they can from the colours.

Tip: There are so many fonts out there that it can difficult to choose the right font to fit your brand. However, if in doubt, keep your font clean and simple as decorative fonts can take over your branding and look cluttered.  

Tone of Voice

The tone of voice you use when writing your web, social media, advert or email content gives a strong impression to the customer of your brand’s personality and values.

It’s important to decide what sort of personality you want to put across to your customers and develop your own personality and tone to ensure you stand out from the crowd.

Tip: Look at your competitors to see how they communicate, and to see what people are responding to.

Your People

Both the people you employ and the people you sell to are paramount to how your brand is perceived.

If you own a shop and the sales assistant you employ has a negative attitude, it will undoubtedly effect the way customers who meet them will view your brand. Likewise, if your staff are enthusiastic about your products and always willing to help, your customers are likely to be happy with their experience and trust you as a company.

Tip: Send in a secret shopper or fake a phone call enquiry to see how your staff communicate with your customers.

Product & Service Experience

Possibly the most important part of your brand identity is the customer’s experience with your product or service. You can have excellent visuals and the perfect tone of voice to describe your company, but if your product or service lets you down you are unlikely to be able to build a successful brand.

Tip: Make sure any flaws in your product are resolved before you launch it.

If you receive a complaint about your customer service or product try to resolve them quickly and with grace. Remember, a disgruntled client is the worst kind of marketing you can have!

Ultimately, everything you do contributes to your brand identity, so you have to care about every aspect of your business to build a successful brand.

Get it right to reap the benefits.