By having a recognisable brand identity, when you share information, news, promotions or other communications with potential customers and your followers, they instantly know it’s from you. They’ll read it because it's familiar. They’ll engage with it because they feel that they know you and you’re trustworthy.
Having a strong brand identity is likely to bring you more business. People tend to do business with businesses that they are familiar with.
Having a strong brand identity can be a motivating factor for existing staff and can help in attracting new staff.
Having a strong brand identity helps create a point of difference in the mind of your audience. It sets you apart from your competition.
What is a brand? Is it just a marketing buzzword or is it really important for my business. Can you build a brand yourself? How can you use it to elevate your business?
What is brand identity?
Your brand identity is what sets you apart from others. It’s usually made up of a number of elements: –
- Your mission
- Your values
- Your style of communication
- How you want people to feel when they use your product or service
- The people you are targeting
It incorporates: –
- Your colour schemes
- Your logo
- Your tone of voice
- Your attitude
It needs to be consistent in every aspect of your business
- Your website
- Your social sites
- Your posts
- Your language
- Your uniforms
- Your rules
Good branding is:-
- Trustworthy (what would make your ideal customer feel comfortable using you?)
- Memorable (keep it really simple but relevant to the core essence of your product or service)
- Flexible (it needs to be able to be tweaked so that it remains relevant and that complete rebranding is not needed)
How to develop your brand identity
- Consider how you want to come across to your target market – what are they looking for in you?
- Do they want quirky and fun (think Virgin Atlantic)
- Do they want cheap and cheerful (think Ryanair)
- Do they want solid and corporate (think British Airways)
- What colour scheme represents this?
- Red is bold and eye-catching – it says look at me. It exudes energy and excitement and passion
- Orange is warm, energetic and friendly
- Yellow signals cheerfulness, friendship, fun, approachability
- Green is soothing and represents nature and tranquillity
- Blue is solid, trustworthy, dependable
- Brown is earthy and solid
- Black is powerful and sophisticated
- White represents purity and innocence
- To go into more detail about colours and their meanings and how you can select a complementary colour palette for your brand, we recommend you visit Canva – a free to use site with ready made templates, colour charts and ideas for branding
- What typeface / font size represents this? Most organisations have two typefaces, one that they use for marketing purposes and another for business correspondence. Your type face and fonts should: –
- Be compatible with each other
- Reflect your style (are you modern or traditional for example?)
- Be easy to read in the situation you will be using them
- The chances are you will need a designer to create a logo for you as you’ll need it to be saved in various formats and with sufficient quality that it can be used on a website. You should use a reputable source to do this for you so that you don’t later run into any copyright issues but this doesn’t need to be expensive. Sites such as Fiverr.com will put you in touch with qualified designers who can create logos for a very reasonable price. There are also a number of reputable agencies in Lincolnshire. Check out our local business and supplier register here Local Business and Supplier Directory | Business Lincolnshire | Business Lincolnshire
- You will also need to consider where you will source your images from (will they all be owned by you, borrowed from the county council free of copyright or will you use stock images) and how they will be displayed. Will they always be framed by block colour; will they be in soft focus; will they have a colour tint applied; will they be minimalist? Where will your logo and tagline appear in relation to the image?
- How you write and speak is also important and needs to be consistent across all your media. Do you write in the first person and are you conversational? Do you keep the language simple or do your audience expect to see more traditional grammar and formal sentences? Whatever the style you adopt – this needs to be adopted by your whole team.
- Once you have developed a list of rules, these should be captured in brand guidelines ‘bible’ to ensure that anyone who works with and for you, whether permanent or contractually is very clear on what is expected in relation to: –
- Your mission (why you exist)
- Your values (what’s important to you)
- Your audience (who you serve)
- Your language (words you do and don’t like)
- Your tone of voice (conversational or formal)
- Your logo (including size and positioning)
- Your strapline
- Your colours (including pantone numbers)
- Your type face(s) and font size(s)
- Your rules for use of images (including where you obtain stock images from to avoid copyright issues)
In this first of three masterclasses on the power of building a brand, Rachel explains what we mean by having a brand and why building a strong brand is important for your business success. By the end of this video on building a brand you will be able to identify a brand image, identity, culture, and personality that represents your business and what you stand for.