Article Summary:What to consider when establishing a brand identity.
Putting the cart before the horse is a common mistake many companies make when launching a business. It's important to look at the big picture, and establish a solid identity. Nothing can compare with having a solid brand identity from the outset. Consider what your company is, and what you would like it to be. Think long and hard about what image you want to project.
To begin, here are some things you can do as you start the process that will help you to create the best brand identity for your organization:
Do some soul searching
Is your style conservative or edgy? And you don't have to be hard left or right here - there are many grades in between - and neither one is good or bad. But before you begin, you should have an idea of where you would like to be on the spectrum.
Surf the web or advertisements, and learn about what types of identities are out there, and notice any positive or negative things you find.
You must set aside your personal likes and dislikes. Why is corporate identity so challenging to develop? It's because it's very subjective. It' s very difficult to shelve opinion-based personal likes and dislikes and concentrate on just the objective goals of the company image.
Look at the Big Picture
Think of the role of your identity in your overall plan, and how it will be used. What is your goal as a company? What kind of impact do you want to make with your audience? How do you want to differentiate yourself from others? What is special about your company? These will all be factors in developing your brand image.
Find the Link
Think about precisely what you want the image to reflect. What your company name is? What your company actually does? (That is, if in fact there isn't a clear line between the two). With company names getting more and more creative, it's important to find a crucial link between the company identity and it's mission.
Choose the Right Design Professional
You should choose a design professional who will ask the right questions, and who will initiate the working dialogue that will lead to a cohesive branding scheme. Some people go into this process with strong opinions, but others don't really know where to start. A good designer can draw the answers to the above questions out of a client, and really get to the root of what the identity should represent. They can then take this feedback and turn it into a compelling brand identity that reflects the company and it's mission.
If you take the time to think these things through you will have gone a long way on the road to a cohesive brand image. Finally, a good design should have a reward. By reward I mean benefit: I believe an identity should be more than just clever. It should provide the prospect with a reward, like intrigue, enjoyment, and understanding. The reward is that little epiphany that comes when an image or advertisement has struck a chord and has really connected with someone.
As the principal of Delin Design, Eric Delin brings with him over 18 years experience in creative services, including branding, advertising, design, direct mail, Web site Design and print production. In 1997, Eric formed Delin Design with the goal of providing intelligent, solution-based creative consultation for companies looking to establish an effective brand image. Supported by a well-seasoned group of creative consultants, Delin Design takes a hands-on approach to working with their clients to develop a corporate identity that meets or exceeds objectives. Eric can be reached at www.delindesign.com