When you start asking questions about what type of font to use for your website and what difference it makes, and what colour the logo should be, then you are missing the primary step because you should understand the tone of your brand. First, you should realize who you are as a business.
Understand Your Brand Persona
Try to imagine that your business is a person because a person has a unique personality and a sense of individual style interacting with other people. Business isn’t that much different. Think about who you want your business to be and use short words to describe that persona. Your brand is for your customers to understand your business, service or product. You’ve got to align your brand persona with your customers’ characters.
After defining your business persona, you start building the image of your brand. That image is vital for laying the groundwork for choosing the stylistic elements of your brand. Depending on your business persona, that will help you decide on all aspects of your brand identity.
The Difference Between Brand, Branding, and Brand Identity
To build a great brand, you need to be aware of these fundamental terms: brand, branding, and brand identity. People think that your brand is your logo; the logo is only the visual element of your brand. There is more to a brand than just a logo.
Brand: A brand is a set of unique perceptions that initiate feelings and holds excessive emotional meaning that people have about your company. That is what makes a successful brand loved and respected. A brand is what your customers think of your company, and what set you apart from your competitors.
For instance IKEA the Swedish company brand stands apart from other furniture stores because when IKEA comes to people minds, they think of the stylish furniture at an affordable price.
Branding: Branding is the active process of affecting the opinions your customers have of your company. It is all the steps you take to build consciousness and reputation around your products and services from competitors, aiming to create a permanent impression in the thoughts of your customers. Your branding efforts may not always interpret into your customers’ minds, but the more robust they are, the higher the chance of your success.
Brand Identity: Through branding, you can build a brand identity. A brand identity is a collection of physical jargons of your company, such as logo, typography, and colours. When these elements are more distinctive, cohesive, and specific, the more they will shape a brand that is familiar and respected.
The IKEA’s logo transformed a bit through the years but remained relatively reliable since 1967, by changing only the colours, and preserving the shape and font build the impression of a strong and recognized brand. The logo is just one of many elements that serve to develop IKEA’s identity. Of course, the definitive picture of IKEA’s brand identity is the actual products they sell, which combine efficiency, style and affordability.
While building your company brand identity, make sure that each element backs up the complete observation you want to imprint in your customers. Keep in mind the difference between the terms of brand, branding, and brand identity.
What is Corporate Identity?
Corporate identity isn’t just your company logo, letterhead, and business card; it is more than that. Corporate design is all those elements that associate with your company’s visual identity, including logos and taglines, colours and fonts, stationery, flyers, web design, social media and more. Corporate identity is who you are as a company, not just those corporate design elements. It is also your culture, your values, and your communications.
Corporate identity is different from brand identity. A big company would have one corporate identity, such as one logo, one set of values, and company culture and under its corporate umbrella, it has hundreds of brands and each with an individual brand identity. Even a small company can still make a distinction between brand and corporate identity.
When you start a company or a business, you already have a corporate identity, but it is a matter of do you want to manage it actively or instead you want to create something to support your business goals. Also, it is essential to consider your design, culture, and personality of your corporate identity. By creating a whole corporate identity, you have to put into consideration all aspects of your business and try to fix what wasn’t working. It’s better to start things right from the beginning than to have tried setting them later on.
By building a corporate identity, you ensure the stability and the coherent of all your communication, allow your business to be set apart from your competitors, and it will help you to be involved with your customers, investors, and employees.