Brand elements, sometimes called brand identities, are those trademarkable devices that serve to identify and differentiate the brand

The main ones are brand names, URLs, logos, symbols, characters, spokespeople, slogans, jingles, packages, and signage. The customer-based brand equity model suggests that marketers should choose brand elements to enhance brand awareness; facilitate the formation of strong, favourable, and unique brand associations; or elicit positive brand judgments and feelings. In general, there are six criteria for brand elements; MemorableMeaningfulLikableTransferableAdaptable, and Protectable. The following sections offer a framework for understanding the distinct responsibilities of each of our discipline, along with a summary of how the disciplines work together effectively.

Identity design process

  • Design Brief
    Get to know the client’s business.
  • Research
    Conduct research focused on the industry, its history, and competitors.
  • Brainstorming
    Conceptualize ideas and make decisions on the possible design directions.
  • Sketching
    Develop the logo design concepts around the brief and research.
  • Design Execution
    Select promising logo design concepts and execute them digitally.
  • Presentation
    Present logo designs concepts in context of applications relevant to the client.
  • Revisions / Approval
    Make changes if necessary. Together with the client arrive on the best solution.
  • Delivery
    Deliver the final logo artwork and identity guidelines.

Brief identity portfolio

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What is brand identity?

Consistency is the gold standard of great brands. It doesn’t matter if you are a solopreneur with a personal brand or a Fortune 500 company, the rules are the same. Visual consistency makes you look professional and speeds customer recognition across media channels.

Brand identity is the collection of all brand elements that a company creates to portray the right image of itself to the consumer. Brand identity is different from “brand” and “branding,” even though these terms are sometimes treated as interchangeable.

Branding involves the marketing practice of actively shaping a distinctive brand. Brand is the perception of the company in the eyes of the world.

Your brand identity is what makes you instantly recognizable to your customers. Your audience will associate your brand identity with your product or service, and that identity is what forges the connection between you and your customers, builds customer loyalty, and determines how your customers will perceive your brand.

How to develop a strong brand identity

Know who you are

Before you know what tangible elements you want to make up your brand identity, you need to know who you are as a brand.

Who you are as a brand is made up of a few key elements:

  • Your mission (what’s your “why?”)
  • Your values (what beliefs drive your company?)
  • Your brand personality (if your brand was a person, what kind of personality would they have?)
  • Your unique positioning (how do you differentiate yourself from the competition?)
  • Your brand voice (if your brand was a person, how would it communicate?)

These elements are what define your brand, and before you start building your brand identity, it’s important you have a clear understanding of each.

If you’re having trouble figuring out who exactly you are, don’t sweat it. Sometimes, all you need is a simple brainstorm to help you get clarity on who you are as a brand.

Ask yourself:

  • Why did we start this business?
  • What are beliefs and values that are important to us as a company?
  • What do we do better than anyone else?
  • What makes us special?
  • If we could describe our brand in three words, what would they be?
  • What are the three words we would want our customers to use to describe us?

You can also check out this awesome branding workbook from consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers. While this workbook is geared towards personal branding, the strategies will work for any type of business model.

Once you’ve locked in who you are as a brand, it’s time to build the identity that will bring your brand to life and show who you are to the people who matter most: your customers.

Your design assets are the tangible elements that will determine how your brand is perceived. Things like your logo, your packaging, your web design, your social media graphics, your business cards and the uniforms your employees wear.

Designing your brand identity

Once you’ve figured out the building blocks of your design, it’s time to work with a designer to bring your brand identity to life and translate who you are as a brand into tangible design assets you can use in your marketing. Your brand identity can be expressed in any number of elements. Depending on the nature of your business, one asset or another may be more or less important. For example, a restaurant should put a lot of thought into their menu and physical space. A digital marketing agency, however, needs to focus more on their website and social media pages.

We craft ones which are also designed to be scalable, consistent and flexible. We make branding easy. Branding is so much more than just a logo, a website or the way you talk to your audience. It’s the experience someone has when they come into contact with your identity.

Your brand’s logo is just the tip of the brand design iceberg. There is a broader palette of visual design elements that go into making a visual identity system. Creating a fully considered set of these elements to use for your brand will give you the consistency you need to succeed. It also has the added benefit of making creating new brand materials easier than having to start from scratch every time. If you’ve found your brand design starting to look visually scattered and confusing, take this list to heart.

  1. Logo Identity

The core visual identity or logo for your business is undoubtedly the most important visual branding asset you must develop. Whether this is a “wordmark” – simply the name of your brand or company in a specific font treatment, or a “lock-up” of a wordmark in combination with an icon that used as a unit.

  1. Alternate Logos

Once you have the main logo, you may need to develop alternate versions of it. Possibly a version that works in a square format or one that works in a long horizontal format. It is not uncommon for a brand to have up to 2 alternate layouts of their logo for specific usages. It is strongly advised not to go overboard here – you don’t want to confuse your customer. If your logo has one or more colours in it, it is also a good idea to have a version that is only black and white.

  1. Usage Guidelines

Once the logos are designed, you need to have a document created that is a set of instructions illustrating exactly how they are allowed to be used. Can your logo have a drop-shadow added to it? Will you allow people to stretch the logo out vertically? Should they be allowed to fill the letters with a photograph? No “not allowed” rule is too ridiculous to show. You would be alarmed what people will do to your logo – to be “creative” or to “make it special for just this one use”.

  1. Fonts

Outline exactly what fonts and sizes are allowed to be used on your brand collateral materials, website, of products. There should be an absolute maximum of four. But I suggest you limit it to two type fonts: a primary and secondary. A main usage font for titles and headlines and a secondary or text body copy font.

  1. Colour Palette

Choose a palette of colours that are to be used in your brand materials. Specify the exact Pantone Matching System name (or similar colour system), as well as hexadecimal numbers for digital usage. These should be colours that are used in your logo and well as any additional colours, secondary or tertiary that design partners will need to create your branding materials. Spend time getting them right. Next to smell, colour is the strongest driver of primal emotional reaction. Don’t go overboard here. Four or five colours is all you need for 90% of brands. A main brand colour, a couple neutral colours, a “pop” or bright colour, and a darker colour.

  1. Pattern + Texture

It is a good idea to create a pattern or texture that will be used with your branding. Having a pattern to use in backgrounds on websites, brochures, banner ads, will come in handy. You don’t want to leave this type of a design decision to your design partners every time they create something for you. You will inevitably get something different every time. Over time the lack of consistency will greatly reduce the quick recognition of your brand when a customer comes in contact with you. Ideally you want visual recognition of your brand to be instantaneous and unconscious.

  1. Graphics + Icons

Designing or choosing a style of icon to be used with your branding materials is an often-overlooked part of brand design. The need for iconography has become even more necessary as brands operate more and more in the digital realm. When it comes down to it, people don’t want to read. They want cryptography. They want to be able to navigate with pictures. What will the style of your icons be? Cartoony? Technical? Hand illustrated? One colour? The choices you make here will reflect on your brands personality.

  1. Photography

Choosing a photographic style to become associated with your brand is an opportunity to elevate your brand beyond the competition. How many brands that you see every day use the same old cheesy stock photography style? Take a look at banking sites. They all look the same! You don’t necessarily have to spend tons of money getting everything shot custom for you. But carefully selecting the style of photography and developing guidelines showing how to use them will make your brand stand out from the crowd. It can be as easy as how they are coloured. Are they retro and faded? Bright and deeply saturated? Two-toned? Black and white? Is the style amateurish and spontaneous? Polished and posed? Action-packed? You get the idea.

  1. Usage Examples

Create examples of what your branding, logo, fonts, colour, palette, etc. look like when they are actually used. This will give aesthetic guidance to your future design, marketing and advertising partners. Design a mock-up of a few items that illustrate how your brand could appear. Try a T-shirt, signage, a full-page magazine ad, a billboard, delivery truck, Facebook banner. It doesn’t matter whether you actually will be using all of these in real life. It creates a picture of your brand ecosystem. You will be surprised how designing just a few examples will begin to provide a clear idea of how your brand “looks and feels”.