LOGO & BRAND IDENTITY: 5 design imperatives for long term success
On 10, Oct 2013 | In Specialty Snapshots | By plaidtractor
A company’s reputation is one of its most important assets. The expression of a brand identity is a reputation’s reference point.
The scope of a brand identity can vary, from only a logo or brandmark to a visual system that expresses a brand’s commitment and character across multiple media touchpoints.
Preparation is the foundation of any good design process. A design solution capable of representing you with the right authenticity, character and credibility requires experience and insight. An understanding of legacy, values, strengths, and competition (to name a few) become design process building materials. Design that successfully accounts for these important factors is more strategic in nature, and therefor more valuable.
Whether you’re embarking on a new venture or revitalizing your brand expressions, here are 5 steps to serve your brand now, and into the future:
Authentic design marries tone, style and language in your media with behavior or characteristics demonstrated on the ground. Maintaining synchronicity between what you say and do shows integrity, builds trust, and is a core tenet of effective branding.
Demonstrating integrity and reflecting it in your brand pays dividends over time. Authenticity helps an identity endure.
Be unique (within your market).
Expressing distinction shows you command the field. Exuding that confidence is assuring to your audience.
Know your competitors and their positioning motives, then position yourself in that category, but separate. Strategic differentiation can hold significant value potential because it’s often underused by competitors.
Design for flexibility.
Organizations grow and evolve. Without modification, a brand identity should allow a brand to shift and grow over time and remain relevant. Successful brand design is more about winning a marathon than a sprint.
Cohesion across different types of media is a constant reminder of your value promise, and your stature within your market. It can also outwardly signal your internal commitment to detail, organization, and reliability. Inconsistency or lapses in quality is like bad posture, and can undermine your message. Consistency is a brand identity’s ally. Over time its meaning builds equity.
Speak to those who are brand-savvy (which is everybody).
Our mobile/digital age, flush with rich design means your audience is more design-educated than ever before. Just about everywhere, we shape our perceptions and behavior around the language of design and its subtleties (often instinctually). Assume your audience understands that language fluently, and that the savviest among them are looking for an opportunity to talk about you.
There are typically other factors specific to an organization’s situation that must be considered. Granting a designer access to key insight, and a spirit of curiosity and collaboration all help fuel the design process.