Why is a brand’s visual identity important?
Today’s market is saturated with products. Everything is more accessible than ever. Price comparison sites help people find the best deal. And yet, people don’t just go for the cheapest option.
Because it’s the brand that sells the product, not the other way around. But no one said building a brand identity was simple. There are many things to take care of: business name, website and product design, a captivating logo, the right tone of voice, an intriguing mission, your own style of photography; all intertwined in a concept called brand personality. You can distinguish a striking brand from a bad one simply – all the elements of quality brands flow together and create a consistent experience. With ‘’bad’’ brands, everything is all over the place.
What does your brand represent?
Is your brand:
- Personable and friendly, or corporate and professional?
- Spontaneous and high energy, or carefully thinking and planning?
- Young, modern and high tech, or classic and traditional?
- Cutting edge or established?
- Fun or serious?
- Accessible to all or upscale, premium?
- More feminine, masculine, or neutral?
It is not always one or the other; it’s normal to be on a spectrum. You can get even more specific about your brand with the following questions:
- Who is your ideal customer?
- How do they communicate, what captivates them?
How old are they, what’s their job?
- What’s your brand personality? (You can’t be everything to everyone.)
- If you had to describe your business idea in three words, what would they be?
Try to pick out some keywords to describe your brand’s values and ‘’feel’’. Here are some ideas:
Achievement-oriented, authentic, adventurous, authoritarian, balanced, beautiful, bold, compassionate, challenge-minded, competent, creative, edgy, daring, fun, feminine, joyful, honest, kind, just, knowledge-oriented, leading, mascline, optimistic, peaceful, pleasure-focused, poised, popular, recognised, respected, service-oriented, spiritual, trustworthy.
If colors could speak
Did you know that certain colors invoke certain emotions? Moreover, color increases brand recognition by up to 80%. If we loosely linked colors to key words, it could look something like this: Arriving at that perfect colour for your brand means you’ll be able to send a consistent message to your audience through your logo, web-design, invoice design, product packaging and much more. The key is to stay consistent throughout your emails, social media, and web copy, too.
Analyze your competition
Researching the logos, websites and color schemes of other brands in your industry can help you decide if you want to compete, or stand out. This guide lists the hex code palettes of several well-known brands, which can be used as a reference to create your own unique combination.
Get HONEST feedback
I learnt an important lesson with my initial mistake. See, your cheerleaders want the best for you, like my guy friends did. They don’t always tell you what they dislike, because they think it applies only to them. And they didn’t want to say anything much initially because they didn’t want to hurt my feelings. And each man thought it was just him who wasn’t really connecting, so better to stay quiet.
So definitely, try to do research as much as possible and ensure that the color you choose is not a put-off for your audience. Urge your super supportive fans, especially among people who can be a sort of representation of your target group, to give you constructive feedback, to say it like it is, that you’re a big girl/ boy, and can handle it.
Sometimes you may not be able to reach the exact target in your close circle. Like if you’re doing a product for an age group which you don’t have close interactions with. Pass it around. Ask your connections to ask people they know.
If they all REALLY like your choice of the color palette, and it matches your brand story, you’re all set!
Brainstorm with your graphic designer
I assume you have a graphic designer who is creating your logo? Do a brain dump of all the above on him/ her. Share your preferences of dominant colors and palettes, brief them on what you want the brand to be, and let them figure out how to bring the brand and the logo design alive with the colors you’ve chosen!
Doing the design yourself? No sweat. Just play around with the colors you’ve chosen so far, and see how best it works with your logo.
The most important thing is, have fun while doing it! This is one of the most creative and exciting parts of your business journey.
Once you set the colors, and people know about your brand, they tend to remember it by color. So while you can keep tweaking your colors a bit as you go, don’t change it drastically from the original color palette you had set. Try not to change the dominant color at all.
Would love to hear your comments and don’t hesitate to reach out to connect with me through my website, LinkedIn, or Twitter for more tips and information on simple ways to execute your branding and marketing for your small business.
While the impact of design and colors on sales may not yet be a science with hard evidence, it doesn’t have to be. When shopping online, perceived product quality is almost as important, if not more important than actual quality – something that can be greatly influenced by good design and the right choice of visuals.