As a business owner or marketing director one of your highest priorities should be to make a mark on your customers’ minds. Having a clear company identity (and surrounding systems) will help your company to create a recognizable, trusted, and consistent perception in your community or demographic - which helps to dominate customer attention and win loyalty. Without the differentiation that a clear identity provides, your customers/clients could easily move towards your competitors to do business with them instead.
A key factor for the success of any company is brand; when most people think of the word brand, the first thing that comes to mind is a logo. It’s true that a logo is a key brand element, and is the most up-front visual association with a company - but there’s so much more to a brand than just a logo.
To build an amazing brand, there’s some terminology you need to be aware of:
Identity: The collection of brand elements that together create one brand image.
Messaging: The actions you create to build a certain image of your company. Messaging is commonly called ‘branding.’
Brand: How people perceive your company. This is a byproduct of ‘messaging.’
Let’s deep dive into these concepts.
What is Identity?
Simply put, identity is a collection of brand elements for your company, such as your logo, colors, typography, supplementary elements like stationary, business cards, etc. and voice. The more distinct these elements are, the higher the chance they will shape a brand that is recognized and admired.
What is Messaging?
Messaging is the continuous process of shaping the perceptions that your customers/clients have about your company. An example of messaging is developing a social media presence for your company - but it doesn’t stop there, it’s HOW you develop that presence that matters. How do your posts look, are they high quality, are they consistent, do they appeal to your chosen demographic? A brand is not only influenced by messaging, but also the aesthetic and experience of that messaging. Remember, the goal is to stand out and be known for something consistently special.
What is Brand?
Your brand is how your customers/clients perceive you. You control this proactively through ‘messaging,’ not reactively through other means.
We hope this helps clear up the confusion between identity & branding. While these are two separate terms - they’re both pieces of the same puzzle.