You just got your shiny new logo and now you are down to business. You envision a day in the next 5-6 years when people will see this logo and immediately think of your brand. Sounds like the harmless daydreaming that we are all guilty of right? But consider this, people will see the logo and recognize it. What will they associate with it? Good service? Innovative products? Benedict Cumberbatch? An annoying voicemail tree? A logo itself does not handle all these complexities.
Logo: The Centerpiece of your Brand
Think of your brand as a celebrity. He/she has a quirky character which distinguishes them. Maybe a beehive hairstyle, a Tony Stark-worthy rapier wit, dramatic makeup, gravity-defying dance poses and a hat? That’s their logo in brand-speak. That’s how you see their silhouette in a gossip magazine and recognize them. You hear a quote floating around the internet and you just know it had to have come from them.
Their unusual characteristic (logo) has given them a special identity (brand identity). But once you recognize them, what qualities do you associate with them? His nerd glasses only tell you so much about him as a person. How, then, do you start rooting for Robert Downey Jr? You create an opinion based on everything you read, hear and experience about him. You watch his movie and get a handle on his acting skills. You read internet rumors and find out about his personal life. You ask for an autograph while he’s getting a bagel and test his nerves.
In short, you create a character sketch of the Dashing Downey Jr based on all your direct and indirect communication with him. And now whenever you hear annihilating sarcasm, you think of an excellent, fashion-forward actor who redeemed himself and immortalized the characters of Iron Man and Sherlock Holmes.
A professional logo is simply a part of the brand, albeit the most recognizable part. A brand is so much more than just the logo. It is the sum total of the impressions made on your consumers through all your outgoing communication, be it your website, your logo, your emails, customer service, goodies, color palette, press conferences, social media handles or social initiatives.
Brand Story: The Bigger Puzzle
Branding is a coherent effort to communicate who you are, what you offer and how it’s different from the competition. The emphasis is on telling the target audience how you are different from the competition. With a complete and cogent branding exercise, you communicate what specific value you bring to the table that others don’t. It could be highly responsive customer service or reasonable pricing or extra goodies or a combination of all or any of these factors.
A logo is only the Versace gown of your brand. It may tell people that you are a Fashionista and help them identify you in the Oscars crowd. But their opinion of how you make their lives easier/better is based on a host of other information about you perpetrated by your brand story. A logo is nothing if not supported by systematic branding efforts that highlight your strengths and your connection with the customers.
Logo: Consistent Branding has got your back
A beautiful professionally-designed logo that speaks of the core values you share with your customers sounds like a dream come true. But it’s about as useful as the ‘g’ in lasagna without a consistent branding campaign. Your value proposition and the feelings you want to evoke in your customers should reflect in all of your communication.
If you’ve been to McDonalds, you must have noticed their color palette. The fiery red and yellow. They are an exciting and catchy brand. The same colors are splattered around their restaurants, menu display and staff uniform. All their ads and promotional material have big displays of their product and the amped up lingo. They tend to get you hungry and jazzed up enough to order from them. This is what we mean by consistent branding. If customers get the same message from your brand time and again, they start associating those values with you. As a matter of fact, they bank on you to deliver those values. The way they bank on McDonalds’ drive-thru to rescue them from desperate bouts of hunger.
Make sure to proudly display your logo in all outgoing communication from your brand, but understand the depth of branding is not limited to this logo alone.
Your logo creates the first impression on your target audience. It’s the flash that draws them to your magic trick. But the brand needs to keep simmering in the background. Like the logo, every communication with the customers is a piece of your brand story puzzle. So communicate consistently without plot holes or else people will come back and tell you Hermione can’t be black.(pun intended).
Confused about how to build a brand? Let us help you. Indizine Solutions