You may think that your company’s brand identity is synonymous with your logo. Wouldn’t that be nice? Everything anybody ever needs to know about the visual representation of your company all wrapped up in one nice little logo? Unfortunately, that’s not the world we live in. Your logo barely scratches the surface of your brand identity. So, we’re going to go beyond the logo and take a deep dive into branding.
Well, you’ve got to start somewhere right? Just because it’s the tip of the iceberg doesn’t mean it’s not important. People sometimes think of branding as synonymous with logo because your logo SHOULD be synonymous with your brand. It should immediately evoke a tone and attitude that is similar to the attitude of your company. Your logo probably won’t be the genesis of that tone, but it does need to be a strong reflection of it.
A wordmark is like a logo, but just the text of your company name. For some companies, their logo is the wordmark (e.g. FedEx, Coca-Cola), but others have logos that rely more heavily on a symbol (e.g. Apple, Nike), while still others use mostly a combination of the two, or a symbol that incorporates part of the text of the wordmark. Whatever the interplay between your logo and wordmark, be aware that if the name of your company is going to appear at any point as text (hint: it is), as much thought and care needs to go into the wordmark as the logo itself.
Your logo is great, but chances are the version you love and cherish won’t work for every single situation. That’s why it’s crucial to have designed and approved variants of your logo that are consistent with the style guidelines of your company. For instance, you might need a black and white version, or a square version, or a horizontal version, or a version with and without a gradient, and so on. You might not be able to anticipate every possible use, but it is definitely a good idea to anticipate a few.
Your logo might have a great font in it that you like, but you probably don’t want to use that one font for every bit of text that your company ever generates or publishes. So, you need a handful of fonts that match your company’s persona and can be used for printed or web materials.
Similar as with fonts. The colors in your logo are probably not enough for all design and branding needs. Your company will likely have a small number of key colors, which are more likely to be part of your logo, but beyond that it’s a good idea to have a pre-established palette of colors that can still be considered in line with your brand identity.
These might include certain shapes, symbols, textures, icons or even just white space. They might show up on your website’s navigation bar, or a certain style of bullet-points in a pamphlet. The other graphical elements you use are going to be the visuals peppered throughout your website and collateral that give a feeling of attention to detailed, and make for a good, complete brand identity. Check out some of our work.
10twelve love's branding! Contact us today for a free 30 minute branding discussion. We are always interested in learning about people's businesses. Thanks for reading!