How To Create A Brand Identity For Your Company
Brand identity is not to be confused, as it so often is, with a logo. Yes, a logo might make up part of your identity, but these two terms are not to be used interchangeably.
In fact, brand identity is essentially the personality of your business. It encompasses your values, products, visions and how you want your customers to feel each time they interact with your goods or services.
As you can imagine, then, it is so important that you establish this identity early on and use it to help your company grow.
But if you’re new to the business world, you might not be familiar with how to create and establish your brand identity, which is exactly why we have put together this guide.
Why is brand identity so important?
Before we get down into the finer details, let’s first address why creating a strong brand identity is so important for the success of your company. There are serval key reasons you need to invest time and resources into your brand identity; these include:
- To inspire customers to take the desired actions, e.g. making a purchase or signing up
- To increase customer loyalty, helping to attract new customers and retain existing ones
- To act as ‘the face’ of your business and to build credibility and trust
- To make your brand and/or products instantly more recognisable
- To give your company more advertising options
- To give your company a purpose and goals to work towards using your mission statement and values
These are just a few reasons you need to establish your brand identity right from the get-go. Check out the guide below for more details on how to get started.
8 steps to creating your brand identity
Once you’ve got an idea for your business, whether you’re offering goods or services to your customers, you can immediately begin to think about your branding.
Then, you can begin to work through the following steps to establish your identity and start driving your business forward.
1. Research and initial ideation
The first thing you need to do when creating your brand identity is to do some market research and start putting together some initial ideas. There are several areas you will need to focus on at this stage, including:
- Your target audience – You need to determine your target audience. Narrow this down as much as you can and think about what they want from your company
- Your USPs – Next, determine what makes your business unique in your industry and what are your unique selling points
- The competition – Who are your main competitors, and what are the key differences between you and them
- SWOT analysis – Start making notes of your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to your business
- Your brand personality – The type of personality you want to inject, looking into colour schemes, imagery and tone of voice
2. Craft your mission, vision and values
Once you’ve begun your research, you can start to think about your mission, vision and values. This is all about understanding the purpose of your business and what it’s all about.
There are lots of tools out there that can help you to write your vision and value statements, and if you’ve never done this before, it’s best to seek help to ensure this is as precise and helpful as possible
Once you’ve created all three, you need to inject your mission, vision and values into everything you do. This will help you to drive your business forward and remain innovative.
3. Create your personality
You should also create a personality for your brand, as we mentioned above. This will include aspects such as choosing colours, fonts, images and more to represent your brand.
Think about the tone you want for your company and how you will make it instantly recognisable. All of this will add up to create your brand identity.
Each of these features will come in handy as your business establishes itself and begins to grow, as you’ll see next.
4. Design your logo
One of the most recognisable elements of a brand is its logo. Therefore you need to create a logo that you love and can use across your website and communications. If you’re not confident doing this yourself, you can always hire a professional graphic design service to do this for you.
Your logo should also incorporate your chosen colours and any imagery you want to be included. You might also wish to use your chosen font at this stage. This can then be applied to your website and other important marketing materials.
5. Choose your language carefully
Another important part of your brand identity is the language you use to connect with your audience. In the early stages, this will involve coming up with a slogan or headers for your website and other platforms.
However, this language and/or message will evolve and eventually will need to be woven into everything you do, including your product descriptions, advertising, social media and more.
This means you need to choose your words wisely and make sure these are emotive and relatable to your target customers.
6. Know what you need to avoid
There are several things you need to avoid if you want to create a strong brand identity:
- Don’t copy any of your competitors or even mimic their ideas
- Don’t send mixed messages to your customers
- Don’t be vague or inconsistent with your branding (more on this next)
- Scale up but don’t sacrifice your branding and personality to do so
7. Be consistent
As promised, it’s also important that you are consistent with your brand identity to ensure it works and makes your business more recognisable. This can increase customer loyalty.
Put simply; this means your colour scheme, logo, imagery, fonts and messaging must always remain the same.
By creating a template for everything you do as you go along, you can quickly and easily adapt this when needed, ensuring consistency across your brand.
8. Monitor your branding
Finally, in the early days of your business, you need to monitor your brand identity and set out some key performance indicators to keep an eye on. You might even want to gather feedback from your customers to see if there are any areas of your identity and personality they feel can be improved upon.
You can use tools like Google Analytics to help you track interactions with your brand and to ensure consistency across the board.
In doing so, you can fix or tweak your brand identity accordingly to ensure you and your customers are happy with what you’ve created.