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Brand Identity – The Ultimate Guide

Brand Identity

Getting your brand identity right is essential if you run your own business. You’ve probably put loads of effort into promoting your services and building your customer base. However, it often leaves you wondering how you can better connect to your audience and create more loyal customers. Well, putting a little more thought and effort into your brand identity can make it a whole lot easier. Building a strong and successful brand identity takes a lot of work but everything you do will be well worth the effort. 

As a Brand Design Agency, we’ve outlined 6 attributes of a successful brand identity that you can build into your own brand to help you engage with your audience, enhance your profile and grow your customer base

1. Your brand identity should have a purpose 

Prospective customers are looking for something they have in common with you, something to emotionally connect with, some value that they can take to their heart. Customers are surrounded by a myriad of choices in most sectors, so often the only thing that differentiates you from your competitors is you purpose, that idea of who you are as a company and why you exist. It’s this that will create that emotional connection with your customers. A good example of this is Costa Coffee’s partnership with environmental bodies such as Rainforest Alliance. Anybody who is passionate about environmental issues instantly sees a connection and is more likely to buy their coffee rather than their competitors. 

2. Your brand identity should be unique 

Your brand identity needs to differentiate and elevate what you do over and above your competitors, after all, you probably aren’t the only person in your field and your competitors are probably offering similar services or products. You need to brand your services or products as unique. It makes sense to carve out a niche that is unique to you and your brand should portray this, even if you have to focus on a very specific sector of business. You may end up with a smaller pool of prospects, but they have more chance of becoming loyal customers. Build your brand around these customers, as they will be the ones who will seek you out because they know you are the one who will provide that unique service they need.  

3. Your brand identity should be consistent 

We’ve all seen how much criticism our politicians have received over the past year throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. Rules have changed, restrictions have been relaxed and then tightened up again, things are said and then minds are changed. People hate it when things are inconsistent and unpredictable. The same can be said about your brand identity, brand guidelines and promotional literature. If your brand identity isn’t consistent across all touchpoints, people will lose trust and the emotional connection will be lost. A consistent brand identity breeds confidence and maintains an unfaltering image. It adheres to your companies values and perfectly aligns with your company goals. A consistent brand identity exposes your target audience to your core messages, visual identity, and brand values repeatedly, which all helps in brand recognition. 

4. Your brand identity should be adaptable 

We’ve already spoken about the consistency of using your brand identity across all touchpoints, but looking to the future, in the longer term, your brand identity should also be adaptable to change. The world is forever changing and customers tastes never stay the same for too long. Your brand identity needs to be able to adapt to changing times, changing attitudes and changing mindsets. You must ensure that however the business landscape changes, your whole brand is able to evolve with the surrounding landscape and culture. Don’t fight change, embrace it, and make sure your brand is able to adapt to it. Regardless of the size of your business, make sure your brand identity, as well as your logo design, is always nimble, flexible and adaptable and make sure everyone in your company understands the changing face of your brand too. 

5. Your brand identity should have a good story to tell 

It’s essential to have a good story to tell. It reminds customers that there are human beings behind the company, just like them, who work hard to give them what they want. A good story will create emotional connections, give a feeling of familiarity and generate trust. Managing those stories is an art in itself but once you master the art it is remarkably effective in captivating customers and retaining loyalty. Get the right feelings and emotions behind your stories and they will ensure your brand identity sticks in the mind of your customers for years to come. 

6. Your brand identity should be engaging 

If you want your customers to keep that emotional connection with your brand, then you need to keep the conversation going. Allow your brand to interact and talk to people on a human level with engaging content on your blog, your social media strategy, and any forums you use. People who buy into your brand want to feel like they are part of it and can influence the evolution of your business. Don’t use these platforms to constantly drive sales or you might turn loyal customers off your brand. Instead, use them to tell your stories, give useful information or answer customer questions. Remember to interact and like the posts of people who are following you, after all, these are the people who have chosen to be involved in your brand. Give them something useful or answer a burning question and they’ll return time and time again. 

To sum things up… 

One thing we have learned as a creative design agency is that people just want to be able to form an emotional connection to a company before they buy. They want to feel like they have something in common with your brand, whether it’s following the same values, having a feeling of familiarity and trust or simply relating to a story you have told. Allowing your brand identity to influence their routine and become a part of their own identity, means having loyal customers for life. 

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