Whether you’re creating a disruptive company in the depths of your basement or launching a new, fully-supported service line, you need to develop a brand.
And not just a brand but a cohesive, custom, and value-driven solution that sparks interest and bolsters loyalty.
But before you sit down and sketch a logo or hire an agency to collaborate with, there are a few questions (three to be exact) to ask your team.
Run through the following branding questions to ensure that you arrive at a clear and conscientious decision.
How Does My Industry Approach Branding?
First thing’s first: what does your industry landscape look like? More than likely, your industry has a set of basic standards that brands adhere to, and that’s not necessarily a weakness.
Generally speaking, there is a sliding scale between “safe” and “innovative” across industry types.
For example, if you’re in the healthcare industry, you probably want to evoke trust and comfort. Developing yourself within certain industry standards (aka playing it safe) will be the best way to achieve your goals. On the flipside, if you’re an experiential restaurant, you want to be innovative. Breaking the rules of your industry may be the best way to reach those goals.
Another reason to look at the competitive landscape is to better see opportunities to stand out. If all your industry competitors have similar brand personalities or showcase specific assets, how can you break through their noise and communicate with your audience in a new way?
Some of the most successful company launches have been due to branding efforts, not fundamentally better products.
What Do I Want People To Feel When They Experience My Brand?
This should align with your differentiators and the value you bring to your audience but should go further than giving your brand a few adjectives (read: fun, warm, kind, professional).
Sure, give your brand a few personality descriptors, but then answer the question: “how should people feel when they experience this?”
Channeling this raw emotion will guide your brand’s creation more than single-word exercises.
Lastly, remember that your brand won’t only be what you convey; it will become what your users think about you. You can over-create a brand if your audience has overly strict industry expectations.
Besides My Logo, How Will I Convey My Brand Personality?
As you know, a well-designed logo can only do so much to convey your brand’s personality. You also need to strategize messaging, core values, imagery, and human interaction.
Start with one incredibly important part of your brand — the most important aspect beyond your logo. What is this for you?
It might be your messaging and copy that stands out amongst the crowd. It might be your website design and experience which is cohesively designed with the user in mind. Or it might be another identity system build out–something beyond the standard.
Since most branding is accomplished via visuals, you want your brand to have a visual conversation with your audience across multiple platforms. Logo, copy, animation, color themes, and fonts are all ways you converse and get your companies personality across.
This is the perfect time to revisit question one. Are you blending people’s expectations with your unique values to arrive at an impactful can’t-be-ignored brand?
If the answer is yes, then you’re at an excellent spot to start creating branded materials. If no, then you might need some branding or product development assistance.
Wherever you are in the process, Zenman can help. Reach out for brand consulting and creation, product development, and design.