“You’re paying for the brand” is a phrase far too common (to the point of it becoming a cliché). From Louis Vuitton handbags to iPhones, this modern-day saying seems to be applied on everything.
Nothing in a higher price range can escape the all-too-powerful “paying-for-the-brand” etiquette. And, as of lately, not even lower priced items can get away without a “brand identity” of some sort (when in doubt, look at beauty vloggers online and count the times they say “affordable makeup brand” in a series of ten consecutive videos).
“Brand” seems to be on the lips of everyone: entrepreneurs, employees, freelancers, and consumers alike allow themselves to be bewitched by the power of the word on a daily basis.
How much do you know about branding, though? What is it, and how do you build it? How do you create an impactful brand identity?
We aim to answer these questions in the following article – so read on if you want to find out more about creating a brand identity that truly stands out in the crowd.
So, What Is a Brand, Actually?
Put in very simple terms, a brand is a distinguishing mark, which can be comprised out of a multitude of elements, a couple of them, or just one “special something” that sets apart the products or services of a company in relationship to its competition.
If you’re ever in doubt over what a brand is, think of Apple. They are notorious for having built more than just a company, a business, or a product: they are known for their branding and for the way that reflects in everything (starting with the actual products and ending with the logo, the way their site is designed, and the way every single PR or publicity message is relayed to the audience).
Branding starts with the name of your company – the linguistic marker of who you are, what you do, and what your business is all about. Going back to the aforementioned example, Apple might make you think of fruit distribution company – but if you dig deeper into this choice, Apple is also something relatable, simple, and easy (which is what all the Apple products are built around, in the end).
Your motto or tagline is also an important component of your brand. You need to come up with something really easy to remember – like Nokia’s Connecting People, or McDonald’s I’m Lovin’ It. These are taglines everyone knows and recognizes – and you want the very same for your business too.
Beyond all this, though, your visual identity is probably the most poignant and crucial element of your branding efforts. People might not read your tagline at first – but they will see your logo and your brand colors and associate them with your business. Think of Facebook’s simple logo on a blue background or Coca-Cola’s unique font – that’s the kind of simplicity and meaningfulness you are aiming for.
How to Build a Proper Brand Identity?
Creating an impactful, recognizable logo is one of the first steps to take not just as part of your branding efforts, but as part of your entire entrepreneurship efforts. Some start-up business owners are afraid to invest in a quality logo because they feel it might cost a lot and it might involve a lot of time on their end.
However, using an online tool will allow you to nail the perfect logo in a very short amount of time and for a more than decent price. Our logo creation tool makes branding more affordable and easier to tackle than it has ever been – you just have to select your options and create your very own unique logo. No design knowledge needed, no expensive tools, no hidden costs – just straightforwardness and ease of use.
Some of the crucial tips to keep in mind when creating your logo:
1. Make your logo relevant. If your company sells socks and you use a candle as your main logo element, people will never associate your company (and product) with the actual logo. Make your logo feel truly connected to your business…
2. …But don’t make it too Double-entendre logos and clever logos will always catch on like fire. It is very important to make sure your logo strikes the perfect balance between relevance and wittiness.
3. Use a distinguishable color. People love color even when they don’t know they do. They are natural attracted to vibrant color schemes and harmonious color. Even more, according to a study ran by the University of Loyola, a specific, custom brand color can increase your brand recognition by up to 80%. In a sea of competitors, that can actually make or break your business.
4. Your logo should be memorable. Even if your sock company features an actual sock as its logo, it should have something unique to it – the pattern on the sock, the way it is stylized by your designer, or maybe even a funny element that makes your logo stand out from the crowd (in an absurd example, this could be a sock that mimics a funny face, for instance).
5. Your logo should be very simple. Drawing the grass, the feet, and the socks and including all of them in your sock-selling company’s logo will make it way too crowded and hard to understand. Think of Nike, for instance – their logo is as simple as it gets, and it conveys the perfect message within it.
6. Your logo should be perfectly Yes, your future customers will not pull out a measuring tape to see if your logo is perfectly distanced from the borders. However, they will see something is off if your logo isn’t symmetrical.
7. It’s not always what is seen. Sometimes, making use of the negative space around your logo can be a very clever idea. For instance, if you take a closer look at FedEx’s logo, you will notice that there’s an arrow pointing right between the “E” and the “X”. That arrow can send across a very powerful message!
8. Your logo should be scalable. This is more of a technicality than anything (and something your designer should definitely know) – but building a logo in Photoshop as a simple image is not a good idea because you will not be able to scale it easily (e.g. put it on business cards and on event posters by simply resizing it). What you need is a vectorial image that will allow you to easily resize your logo and use it wherever you need it. This logo creation tool does this automatically, so you will not have to worry about taking any extra steps in this direction.
9. Don’t follow into trends blindly. Every now and again, you will see logo trends that sweep over the marketing and branding world. While “stealing” inspiration from these is perfectly fine, following them “ad-litteram” might not be such a good idea – precisely because everyone else is doing it and thus, your logo will be void of its uniqueness.
10. …Which brings us to the last (and probably most important) tip: make your logo yours. It doesn’t have to be cutting-edge, it doesn’t have to use rocket science during its creation process, and it doesn’t even have to be flawlessly aesthetic. It needs to be yours. It needs to speak about your business and the amazing products you sell. It needs to be all about you, as much as it needs to be all about your audience too.
Your logo is more than just an image.
It is the image your customers will recognize you by. It will take them 10 seconds to make an impression on your products and it will take about 7 times of them seeing your logo to start associating it with your brand. However, when that image is imprinted in their memory, they will always recognize your business.
Because the human brain can process images about 60,000 faster than words or sounds. This your brand visual image one of the most powerful weapons you have on the market when fighting against your competitors. Make it a memorable one!