Your brand is the message you are sending out into the world about your business- and that is a big responsibility! Fortunately, you don’t have to pack everything- your brand personality, a description of the products you offer, the value of the offering, the industry you are in (and more!) into one image or word. You can select a combination of brand elements that work together to convey all of that meaning.
Here is a brief explanation of some basic brand elements and what they can do for you.
Brand names can be the same as your business name or a shorter version of it. Your brand name is the most important of all your brand elements as it will be seen as synonymous with what you do and who you are– it will identify your organization and be seen as indivisible from it. Your brand name will be presented in writing (where other elements may be seen) or shared verbally, in which case it will stand alone. It is also the hardest element to change once established.
A logo is a visual symbol that represents your brand. Logos can be images, combinations of words and images or simply stylized letters. Some considerations are where your logo will be seen- will be it used on social media? In that case it had better be clear and easy to see in a very small square on a mobile device! Will be used on packaging? Then perhaps it should be more elaborate. Logos are a great place to communicate a lot of information through graphic design, colour and style. Get this brand element right and your target audience will understand and appreciate a great deal about your business just from seeing your logo.
Taglines are a great opportunity to add more brand meaning to your logo or business name. If your name is very imaginative, your tagline can provide the descriptive information your potential customers need to understand what you offer. Or vice versa, if your name is very straightforward, a tagline can use emotional language to connect with your customers in a deeper way. Tagline should be short, catchy, and very well thought out. You can also create taglines for specific marketing campaigns or new products and services.
Everything people see in relation to your business should send the right message. Style is a an often underestimated brand element. In actuality, the importance of style can not be understated. Get the style right and your target market will be attracted to your brand before they even know what you are selling! Get it wrong and they won’t even look your way.
The colours you choose for your visual brand say so much about your business. Colour is psychological and emotional, and can bring your brand to life in an instant. If you choose to create your brand professionally, you will receive specific codes for your brand colour palette that can be used online and in print- so that all your marketing materials will present a unified, professional image. Consistency is important here. A well chosen colour palette can communicate brand feelings very effectively.
Closely tied to logo and style, font choice comes down to the tiny differences in meaning inferred by the way letters are shaped. An out-of-date font can make your business seem irrelevant and stodgy, while a font that is too “out there” could be hard to read and miss the mark. Again, a professionally created brand gives you the font names and files that you need to be on brand and consistent at every customer touchpoint, from your store-front to your website.