In an age in which consumers are spoiled for choice, the significance of brand identity becomes ever more vital. Whilst the state of the economy has made consumers more cautious, it has not stopped them purchasing and people are now spending more time than ever researching brands and making educated choices before they buy into any product. The supremacy of consumer choice represents the first of many challenges that businesses will face in the quest to become successful. So where does brand identity come in to building a thriving business?
Despite branding acquiring a reputation as a vacuous buzzword, in fact it means so much more than jingles and glossy packaging. It is about communication: communicating who you are, what you offer and how you conduct yourself effectively. This will help you to create a loyal demographic that will not only guarantee that your sales remain steady, but help you to stand out against the competitors in your field and draw in more capital. A solid brand identity is beneficial to your company because it paints a picture of consistency and stability. Such an image invites a sense of longevity, commands respect and enforces the reliability of your product. Customers will return but more crucially they will recommend – a factor that is essential to increasing the reach of your sales.
Loosely speaking, brand identity is largely built through the ‘look’ of your company. Whilst a logo or particular imagery is undoubtedly a huge part of corporate character, this symbol should be secondary to the list of guidelines or marketplace ethics which it represents. Having a great logo is useless if your brand doesn’t put out a clear message about what it offers. Make your goals and services visible and use your icon as a mark of professionalism which underscores the pledge you have made to your customers to provide good service, customer support and to assure product performance.
Brand identity focuses the aims, principles and values of your company into one universally recognizable image. Branding tells a story about the personality and principals of your company and invites customers to start building a relationship with you. If your company is headed by a real person, so much the better: that human element will work to dispel the mistrust that can creep in to interaction with big business. Encouraging customers to care will engage them on a personal level and guarantee their return. Establishing a company culture will help to consolidate your company’s reputation as a trustworthy manufacturer. It is also a gentle reminder to use your company without necessarily pitching a hard sell.
Always remember that the goal of brand identity is to create customer relationships, not to drive up user numbers. Returning customers will follow your developments, use word of mouth to sing your praises and support you in the long-term. Your brand presence and visibility should signal to prospective customers your status as a powerhouse in your field, an inexhaustive resource of related knowledge and as a purveyor of quality. If your brand identity does these things for your business, you are on the road to success.