Simple Guide To Branding To Create a Powerful Brand Identity
Every successful brand has solid and powerful branding behind it. However, it can be daunting to know where to start when creating a brand style and finding your feet in an ever-competitive market.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to branding for every company either, but when you follow our comprehensive guide to branding, you can start to piece together the basics for your company! If the process seems daunting or out of your area of expertise, strategically partnering with a branding agency will take the hard work out of it for you.
So if you’re looking for a top guide to branding, check our handy step-by-step basic process to get started. Our guide to branding includes everything you need to know about creating a brand identity:
What is branding?
The branding process is made up of three distinctive brand elements. These factors will help you create a brand strategy for your long-term goals and target the right audience every time.
The three elements of branding include:
- Brand – This is how the world sees your brand.
- Branding – This aspect incorporates what makes your brand what it is, such as the marketing and practices to bring it to life.
- Brand identity – This is your brand’s visual assets such as logo, website, and business cards, everything that showcases your brand message.
Guide to branding: Developing your brand strategy
Before you get to work on the creative parts of creating a brand, start by looking behind the scenes first! Building your brand begins with defining the way you want your business to grow. The elements of building a clear and consistent strategy should answer critical questions such as:
- Who are you as a company?
- What makes you different from competitors?
- What is the ‘why’ behind your business?
- What is your brand story?
- What are your core values?
- Do you know your ideal customer(s)?
Guide to branding: Building your brand identity
When you have established a framework around the main factors above and looked at the why before you put pen to paper, you can start creating your brand identity. There are several aspects to this part, including:
Establishing your brand voice
Brand voice is exactly how it sounds. This is the voice that you speak to your customers with. Deciding the tone and sound of this is vital to grab the attention of the right people. Determine how you want to sound - is your business edgy and ahead of the trends, or do you want to portray a classic, professional approach?
Establishing this voice will then guide the visual assets of your branding.
Typography doesn’t just cover the type and style of fonts for your branding; it also highlights how you apply the fonts in designs. Choosing the best typography is vital for communicating your brand voice appropriately. It basically speaks to your customer without saying anything. Fonts portray different messages. For example, classic fonts have a traditional and professional feel, while creative type offers a fun, edgy vibe.
Choosing the color palette
Alongside typography and brand voice, the colors you choose are also essential to get the right message across. Color can affect mood and perceptions and has a strong impact on your audience. The psychology of color should also be considered.
For example, blue is associated with reliability and trust. In comparison, red is typically matched to excitement and passion. When you look at how other strong brands use color, you’ll identify a pattern in their marketing and brand identity.
Guide to branding: Creating a brand style guide
When you have developed your brand identity, it’s time to bring everything together to create a consistent and long-term style guide. This branding guide for your business will centralize everything and ensure everyone understands the do’s and don’ts when implementing strategies.
Every business should have a brand guide they can turn to, and the more detail in it, the better. A brand book ensures your message stays consistent across all mediums. The brand guide should include all of the above elements as a minimum.
Guide to branding: Designing the brand assets
Once your style guide is in place, the next step in branding is creating brand assets. These are the face of your business and the elements people remember when they hear your name and buy your products or services. The basics of brand assets include:
Your logo is a vital visual asset that brings your story to life. We all know and love famous brand logos, and you should aspire to create this level of recognition for your business. The design should be closely related to your company. However, it’s important to remember, it should communicate with your customers. Try to avoid getting personal opinions or going on what you prefer, as it needs to resonate with the wider public, not individual tastes.
Create a website
Every business needs to be on the web! Your website should be clear, user-friendly, and consistent with your branding. This is your place to showcase products or services, so use the space wisely.
They say the ‘devil is in the detail’ and that couldn’t be truer for businesses. Your branding should feature on packaging (if you sell products) and remain consistent with your brand message. It’s not just what’s on the box either; think about the type of packaging you use. This will reflect on how customers perceive your business.
Consistent branding is also required for all your marketing materials. This includes everything from business cards to stationery.
Each of your brand assets plays a vital role in creating brand awareness. A cohesive approach will also ensure everyone in your business is on the same page.
Guide to branding: Why flexibility is important
While consistency is key in branding, an element of flexibility is also essential to ensure your company can adapt to changing consumer trends and expectations. The core message and assets should remain the same, but if something is not working for you, it may need some adjustments and tweaks.. In some cases, if your entire branding guide is no resonating and connecting with your target audience, it could be time to consider a rebrand.
Within your style guide, it’s also handy to be flexible with your brand voice, especially when speaking to different segments of your audience. The key components should remain the same, but slight adjustments should be considered to project the right message if you are talking to different demographics.
An excellent way to incorporate flexibility, in this case, is by creating a persona for various customers. This will provide a guide for content marketing and promotions when targeting varying segments of your audience. The overall tone will remain the same, but the approach to marketing will be tweaked to communicate effectively to optimize conversions.
Guide to branding: Main takeaways
Creating effective branding for your business is a major step in building successful long-term goals. It all starts with a strategy and identifying your customer, and producing a style guide to ensure everyone is on the same page.
It’s also important to stay consistent throughout. If you’re stuck on any aspect of your brand identity and strategy, check out branding agency services to help you through the process. This type of service is great for getting an impartial and expert view on establishing your identity in the market.