“I have a logo. And business cards. That’s my brand, right? I don’t need to worry about anything else.”
Well, the bad news is that your logo is not your brand. Your logo is the foundation for building your visual identity, but by itself it a logo does not a brand make.
Because the logo is, in essence, the “face” of a business, it’s easy to see why some might assume that “logo = brand.” Truthfully, the logo is just a part of the brand…it’s not the whole story.
What IS your brand then?
Your brand is the big picture of what your business is all about:
- it’s the promise you make to your buyers;
- it’s what people come to expect from doing business with you;
- it’s that “one thing” your clients come to associate with you;
- it’s the way your business is different from your competitors;
- it’s how people feel about your product or service;
- it’s what you stand for.
You can see that it’s a fairly broad “umbrella” kind of definition. And to be honest, there is no one definition set in stone. “Brand” means many (and different ) things to many people. But one thing we can agree on is that your brand boils down to what your business is really all about. And it has nothing to do with colour swatches, stock images or favourite typefaces. It actually has to do with the product or service you offer. It’s about the clients you serve and how; it’s about the experience of doing business with you instead of your competitor. And finally, it’s about how you communicate all of that to your audience.
You may not have thought of your “brand” this way before. Some business owners go about their work without thinking about the end goal, or why they really get up in the morning. When Jennifer, Ima and I discuss your brand, we talk about all those things with you. For instance:
- We want to know why you serve 35-50 year-olds that live in the suburbs
- We need to figure out why you like the colour orange so much
- We wonder why you prefer a heavy dose of humour in your ads
- We ask why that decade-old tagline is so meaningful to you
- We try to figure out if the very formal, straight-laced tone of your website is really resonating with your audience
So no, your brand isn’t your logo in isolation. Your brand, and its design is a complex process that will have you thinking about some pretty important questions.
If you think that you need to investigate this more, we will be glad to help you ease into the process of branding your business. Our goal is to create an accurate reflection of what you really do and why. And the plan needed to share that vision with your audience.