What Is Brand Identity? How to Develop an Effective Message.

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Brand identity is the heart of your company’s efforts to craft an image that conveys a message to consumers. Understand unique details of effective branding to best build brand identity. Construct an ideal brand identity by determining the way your company wants to be seen by consumers. Here is a complete guide to to help construct your brand identity.

What Is Brand Identity?

Brand identity is how a company is seen or experienced by consumers. It’s the way a business constructs its brand – from the logo, color schemes, fonts and uniforms – built with a goal to elicit positive emotions from consumers.

Brand identity is different from brand image. The easiest way to differentiate the two is to think of the difference between a sports team’s practices and games. In the practices, they do everything in their power to control the outcome of their in-game success. This is the brand identity. Brand image is how they play in the actual games. The fans watching the game are the consumers. They see whether the team is good or bad. That’s the brand image. Whatever they did in preparation (practice) for the game is irrelevant to the fans.

Brand writing.
Brand identity is key to customer relations.

Building Brand Identity

The first step in building brand identity is determining what type of message you want your brand to relay. Next, shape your company based on these principles to achieve the desired brand identity outcome. Be aware of how the brand identity will translate into brand image. If, for example, picture a retail company’s employees wear flip-flops as a standard. Even though the brand identity was constructed to be laid-back, the brand image is probably going to be unprofessional.

Another aspect of brand identity is the visual representations. This includes not only the brand logo, but also the fonts used in newsletters or websites. The upkeep of visual solidarity is part of brand consistency, which refers to the way an animated image behaves or the color scheme blends. By upholding a consistent display of all things visual with your brand, half the battle of a successful brand identity is won.

People working on a logo.
Consistency is a big part of identity.

Maintaining Effective Brand Identity

An overlooked step of the brand identity journey is the maintenance phase. This includes fixing things that aren’t working and changing things that are hurting brand identity. Part of maintaining brand identity is reinforcing the status quo. A positive brand identity should be fortified through campaigns with designs that build off past successes.

When brand identity is falling out of favor with customers, it’s time to evaluate and adjust. Changing a brand logo might be costly and sacrifice customers, but sitting idly by could be worse. Be prepared to make distinct changes to colors, fonts or website designs from time-to-time to be dynamic.

Brand identity is whatever you make it. Outside influence matters very little when it comes to brand identity. Your company’s true intentions and ideas put it into motion. Knowing this, think of the control you have when building brand identity. Understand your company values at their core to effectively develop a brand identity.

Casey Schmidt – Content Manager and Industry Expert | Canto

Casey Schmidt is a content manager at Canto who enjoys taking complex subjects and making them easy to understand for readers.