Most small and even some medium sized businesses use the term ‘brand’ interchangeably with ‘logo’. In reality, a logo is just the graphic device that represents the company or product.
SO WHAT IS A BRAND?
A brand is more than a simple graphic device. It tells the entire ‘story’ of your marketing strategy.
A true brand brings meaning and relevance to your product and occupies a particular position within the mind of your customer or prospect. It speaks to your market in ways that are less obvious, using non-verbal cues, metaphors and other subtle, albeit powerful tools.
Take a moment to think about these well-known and easily recognized brands; Mini Cooper, iPod, Hell’s Pizza, 42 Below, Tui, Volvo.
You may not be able to immediately recall the logo devices of all these brands, but you will most likely have an innate feeling and opinion about their brand personality and what they mean to you, positive or negative.
The reason for this is that over time we look beyond the logo device and base our brand opinion on the experience we have with a product or company, from the way they speak to us in the written and spoken marketing word, down to the way they interact with us in personal contact situations.
Nothing kills a brand faster than failing to deliver on the brand promise. Unless you are confident you can deliver, don’t over promise.
The use of carefully selected colour palettes and fonts, style of copywriting, general format of printed material and templates, all communicate a specific message. In fact, a strong brand can create recognition even when the logo device is not visible.
Branding is all about personality. Compare a brand to our own personality – in assessing ourselves we would include our appearance, voice, style of speech, mannerisms, sense of humour, temperament and a host of other traits. All of these aspects would add up to brand ‘ME’.
Although some of these elements may not be unique to us, when combined in a particular way (according to our DNA) they create our own unique personality. In the same way, numerous brands may use similar fonts, others may use the same colours, but your brand brings these elements together in its own unique way (brand DNA), setting you apart.