23 Oct 5 Important Rules of Branding
Even though “logo” is in our name, we’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: building a great brand is so much more than designing a great logo. Good design plays a key role in developing your brand, but when people recognize your well-designed logo, the feelings it stirs are what will help your company thrive… or cause it to fail.
How do you create those positive brand associations and emotional responses? There are a few simple rules to follow. Pay attention to them, think about how they apply to your particular business, and you will be well on your way to creating a memorable, successful brand.
5 Important Rules of Branding
Think About Your Message
First, focus on exactly what your company stands for. What is the message you want to tell everyone who encounters your business? What are your company’s values? Once you answer these questions, creating your unique brand, with its own idiosyncratic elements, will be much easier.
Keep it Simple
The most powerful, easily recognizable brands are those whose messages can be distilled down to just a few words, or even just one. Coca-Cola means refreshment. Apple innovates. Nike encourages the world to “just do it.” Notice that their brand names are similarly simple, and also powerful. Many of the world’s most famous brands have only one word to their name. Boil down your message to its essence.
Keep it Real
In today’s savvy marketplace, where almost all consumers have been soaking in messages from brands all their lives, they spot in-authenticity immediately. Make sure your message, and the voice you create to tell it, are as authentic as possible. Don’t exaggerate, inflate, or mislead your target markets in any way.
Show them How you Can Help
Your brand exists to fill a need or fulfill a desire, with either a product or a service. A key rule of creating that brand is focus on what need you meet, or what you offer that people really want. For example, they want easy-access, affordable, varied entertainment on TV and Netflix has built a brand on meeting that desire. It’s important to make sure your whole team has a clear understanding of this. Whenever a customer or prospective customer encounters someone at your business, they should experience what your brand stands for.
Show them you Care
The most memorable brands are also the ones that have shown us they care about more than only making money. When Starbucks developed programs to help the environment or hire veterans, when Nike used Colin Kaepernick in its controversial “Believe in Something” ad, when Ben & Jerry’s commits to sustainable farming practices, these companies solidify what they stand for and broaden their brand recognition.
These five rules will guide you as you begin to develop your own unique brand. They can help you create the foundation. For more information on the details of creating a brand, check out our previous article, “Five Elements of a Brand (It’s More than Just a Logo).”