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Best Actionable tips to build a winning visual brand identity
How do you stand apart from your competitors visually? How do you develop a brand identity that tells a consistent, coherent story without saying a word? Why is visual branding important? branding and design company
There’s a lot of confusing, misleading information about branding. So, let’s break it down.
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What is brand identity?
Your brand identity is defined by how your audience perceives you.
A long-standing analogy is to view your brand as a person. Let’s take it one step further and view your brand as a friend to your audience. And, instead of seeing your audience as a nameless, faceless crowd, focus on the one, ideal person that you’re targeting, or befriending, with your brand.
In order to make friends with that person, you need to positively influence how they see you. And, that person will continue to be friends with you if you share the same values, enrich their lives in some way, and are consistent.
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A brand that excels at this is Starbucks.
Using Instagram, the coffee giant finds and regrams photos of Starbucks enthusiasts. It echoes a message that the brand listens to and cares about its community– which is key for a brand that positions itself as a neighborhood hangout with attentive customer service.
I know you’re thinking, that’s nice, but what does this have to do with visual branding?
What is visual brand identity?
Visual branding is how you show the type of friend you will be. Use it to influence your audience’s perception of you.
For example, if I check out your Instagram page, and see it filled with fun, behind-the-scenes photos of your office, it may tell me that employee happiness is important to you. If I see nature images paired with inspiring quotes, I may feel that you value encouragement and motivation.
You can, and should, use visual clues to suggest abstract ideas.
Are you authoritative, feminine, irreverent, acerbic, fancy, playful? Nothing answers that question quicker than a visual. Branding and Design Company
When I visit your website, your color choices, the size of your text, and the mood of your design tells me exactly how to feel about your brand.
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This is why visual branding is so important. Whether you’re knowingly influencing it or not, your audience is defining your brand. If the visual that you’re conveying does not match your values, it will disappoint, confuse, and alienate your audience. For example, I’m not quite sure how to feel about an accountant who uses this font:
The style of this font makes the brand feel like a joke. That’s fine if your brand is related to humor, but there’s nothing funny about my money, so I definitely would not trust this accountant, despite what the text says.
As you can see, visual brand identity is more than just photos. It’s the sum total of everything your audience can see when they look at you. Together, all of those visual elements tell a story. That story can re-affirm your values or take away from them.
The good news is that building your visual brand identity is easy to do. Let’s take a look at 20 easy ways to influence how your audience perceives your brand. Answer these questions, and by the end of this guide, I promise you’ll have a better understanding of your visual brand identity.
01. Who is your audience?
Defining your audience is the first step to building a successful visual brand identity. If you don’t know exactly who you’re speaking to, you won’t know what to say. Think of it this way, who should want to be friends with your brand?
Get specific with these questions: Age, Gender, Location, Income, Marital Status, Occupation, Education Level. Depending on your product or service, it may be helpful to define ethnicity. For example, if you sell chemical hair relaxers, it’s important to target your ethnicity.
If you’re struggling with this exercise, take a look at your competitor’s audience on social media. Who is active and who responds? You can find out a lot about who the audience is by the questions they ask and the posts that they like or retweet.
Knowing who you want to reach to get word about your brand helps you plan your campaign. Like how the Solo Travel Presentation targets people who are interested in traveling on their own.
02. How do you offer value?
You should also understand what makes your ideal audience tick. Why would your audience buy your product? What is the void that you fill? Is it entertainment or advice?
If you are a life coach, maybe your ideal customer is an overworked mom who’s desperately searching for meaning and clarity about the future. Now, how do you present your brand in a friendly, visual way that shows you have the answer to her problem? As a life coach, you may dedicate a portion of your website to testimonials of happy clients. Be sure to include a photo as a human touchpoint.
Marie Forleo is a master of this. She has a page on her site entitled “Success Stories” with a seemingly endless stream of testimonials and praises from around the world. Her visual brand identity becomes a composite of all the people she’s helped to live their best lives.
Feedback from your audience is important. It gives you insight on how your brand is being perceived and how well it’s working. Be inspired by Streetwear Creative Wide Presentation.
03. How do you visualize your personality?
Once you understand who your audience is and what you have to offer, the challenge becomes the ‘how’. How do you present our personality visually? In the online world, many brands face the challenge of expressing personality without actually interacting face to face. Whereas before your sales team or customer service would put a human face on your brand, online has created a barrier.
This barrier is even steeper if you’re planning on using text-only to woo your audience.
Obviously, I love text, but when building and promoting your brand identity, there’s more to the story than just writing words.
Using visual references, you can add tone to your words. Let’s look at these examples:
The Color Run shows that it’s an upbeat event with colorful choices. It’s hard to look at this site without feeling energized.
Conversely, Land Rover shows us that the brand rugged and serious, maybe a little gentlemanly.
You can tell that these sites offer two different personalities. One site is playful and the other is more serious. How do you know? Imagery choices, photo filters, and color schemes. Consider how you can play up the images on your site to bring out the key points of your personality.
Again, your audience plays a role on the personality of your site. Take a look at these two templates as examples: Red and Black Food or Cooking For Men Masculine Twitter Post and Strawberries and Smoothie Twitter Post.
04. How do you find the emotion?
A surefire way to reach your audience is through emotion. Does your brand tell a story that will move your customers in some way?
P90X knows how to stir emotion in their customers. Targeting couch potatoes, P90X shows you what’s possible if you get off the couch and start doing pull-ups. Within 90 days, you’re transformed into a fat-burning, muscle bursting machine. Are you pumped? Are you ready to put down the potato chips and make life happen instead of watching it go by!? You can do it! (That’s the emotion behind the P90X brand.)
Feedback from others who use your product is important, as it endears you more to your audience. A template like Fostering Creativity Presentation have spaces for customer feedback and testimonials.
05. How often should you tell your story?
Once you have a narrative, tell it over and over again.
Armstreet specializes in Medieval, Renaissance, and fantasy clothing. The photos that sell their clothing features models in full costume, posed against a dreamy, slightly blurred background. The brand keeps their minimalist logo on the bottom right of the images. Take a look at Armstreet’s Twitter page. The timeline is filled with professional images call to mind childhood fairy tales. It’s a narrative that Armstreet constantly, and successfully, repeats.
The way to get recognized as a brand leader is crafting the perfect story and then telling it again and again to anyone who will listen. branding and design company Chennai
Source : CANVA