How to Create a Brand Identity? – A Step By Step Guide

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What is a Brand Identity?

Brand Identity design is a broader term which encompasses all your logos, infographics, color pallet, and much more. It is a business necessity that helps you stand apart from the competitors and get recognized via your voice. It is the very perception of your brand in the minds of your audience – the visualization that appears when they read, listen or talk about your brand. Creating a captivating and strong brand identity is the foremost step in the formation of any business. Therefore, we’ve got you covered with an incredible guide, describing each step of creating a brand identity in a detailed manner.

Why Create a Brand Identity?

Puzzled about branding your business successfully? Well, a powerful brand identity is the only tool that can create a sense of belonging and attachment among your consumers. The appearance and feel of your business branding – from the standard typography and logo to the customer services and packaging you incorporate within your practices – each of them can create a positive influence over these consumers and help to earn their loyalty at large.

The more consistent and cohesive brand identity you possess, the more are the chances for your brand to connect and relate with consumers. Creating a captivating and strong brand identity requires picking up the excellent content and graphics – subject relevant and capable of earning you an immense recognition among the audience. A strong brand identity is a road to your unstoppable success and growth.

How to Create a Brand Identity?

To cut it short for your assistance, we’ve created this foolproof guide to creating a brand identity, detailing each necessary component efficiently. Initially, you might feel overwhelmed by the complexity of procedure but, implicating each step adequately will surely sort your branding problems with ease.

Either you’re a newbie entrepreneur or looking forward to revamping your existing brand, follow this simple guide with consistency, and create an immense brand identity that lets you pace up your growth games. Here’s how!

Step 1. Create a Complete Brand Strategy

Your brand identity is the ultimate means of executing your brand strategy. While your strategy is the in-depth planning of what and how do you aim to achieve through your brand. Therefore, brand identity contributes to your efforts put into achieving those aims via following the outlined strategy.

So, before you start creating a brand identity, you need to outline a complete brand strategy in advance. As we elaborate on the overall process, we’ll highlight some components of brand strategy, but this article mainly focuses on guiding to create an immense brand identity.

Hence, to begin the process of creating brand identity, it is significant to complete your brand strategy and fully understand your brand’s core functions and values, brand message, and brand voice, for the visualization of your brand needs to be done in exact compliance with these components.

Step 2. Understand the Essential Elements of a Brand Identity

A color-scheme and logo alone cannot create an identity for your brand. Instead, you need to put in a lot more and create a detailed visualization that can be easily implicated throughout – from your packaging to the website and every other platform. The essential elements of brand identity may vary from business to business, but in general, it includes:

  • Colors
  • Logo
  • Photography
  • Illustration
  • Typography
  • Data Visualization
  • Iconography
  • Interactive Elements
  • Design System
  • Video and Motion
  • Web Design

However, just having all these elements designed doesn’t mean they are incredible. Immense brand identity needs to be compatible for all, both your internal team and the externals with whom your brand needs to communicate. As you commence the process of designing, be sure of keeping your brand identity

  1. Unique –stand out of the competition and easily captivate the audience.
  2. Enduring – creates a lasting impression. For instance, Nike – its logo is a simple swoosh, yet anyone can guess the brand easily.
  3. Adaptable and Flexible – capable of evolving and growing the brand effectively.
  4. Adamant and connected – each element reciprocates with the other and creates a close-knitted message together.
  5. Easily Applicable – clear and transparent, easily implacable for the designers.

In case you miss any of these essential elements, it’d be difficult for your brand identity to earn the maximum reach.

Step 3. Carry Through an In-depth Research

As you begin the branding process for any business, you’d surely like to dissect each different phase via critically philosophical viewpoint – scrutinize, jostle, and investigate unless you’re satisfied. Only a complete and diverse knowledge of your subject can help you visualize your brand with perfection.

This indicates the need for detailed research before actually creating the designs. No doubt, research would seem like the most laborious stage of creating a brand identity. But once you’re done researching righteously, you’re just one step away from creation, and that is the implication. Therefore, intricate and investigate thoroughly about whom you aim to communicate with, whom do you have competition with, and at what point do you currently stand. This process might include the following

Create Brand Personas:

Brand identity is the ultimate face of your brand that represents you and communicate with the audience on your behalf. Thus, whatever identity you create, it should be able to fully express your true self and values in front of the audience. The very idea that a valid brand identity is the pure reflection of a brand’s values and objectives seem a little impractical. The truth is that a brand identity can never be authentic unless it perfectly reciprocates with your customers.

However, it does not force you to ask the colors of your logo from the audience but to make sure that your design and color schemes resonate with the needs and demands of the consumer market. Thus, for interpreting your consumer's needs and demands, the best practice is to create personas of each of your targeted segments. A persona helps you determining both the psychographic and demographic information about the audience and can take you to the insights of what attracts these people at best.

Determine Your Competitors

Developing a strong brand identity is to create differentiation within your brand, making your brand unique, relevant, and noticeable among all. However, an adequate understanding of your business’ core values and functions can help you create an impeccable blend. Thus, it is quite significant to understand the overall competition as well as the presentation and perception of your brand.

To do so, you have to carry through a detailed competitor analysis. Study each of your competitor brands, how they present themselves, how they create compliance between their services and the demands of consumers, etc.

Evaluate Your Current Brand’s Standing
Whether you’re a newbie brand or revamping your identity to maximize the reach – evaluation of your brand is necessary in both cases. You need to carry through an assessment which includes 

  • Evaluating the current standing of your brand;
  • Determining the measures which can contribute to the creation of revamping of your brand identity.
The primary objective is to understand how your brand is perceived among the audience as well as the internal members, etc. Determining the accurate brand’s reflection is the only means of outlining ways that can help you succeed in the development of an immense and strong brand identity.

Understanding your brand’s perception asks for research communication, and involvement with your employees, audiences, and all the related stakeholders at large.

For communication with internal stakeholders such as employees, an audit survey can be conducted by asking each member about their preferences and choices. This audit survey might contain questions regarding each aspect – from the core values and functions to the packaging and logo. A well-structured brand strategy would be of great use in outlining these questions.

Once you’re done with the internal audit, the gathered information can be used in the creation of a creative brief. The prominent elements you can put into the creative brief includes –

  • Title
  • Aims/objectives
  • Cause of rebranding
  • Financial limits
  • Probable deadline
  • Targeted audience
  • Perception of your brand
  • Goals of your brand
  • The primary message of your brand
  • The personality of your brand
  • Success metrics
  • Potential competitors
  • Insights from the history
  • Inspirations and related references

As you have the complete brief of your brand in hands, now is the time to implement and dive into the designing process.

Step 4. Create Your Brand Identity –

By the time you reach this stage, you’ll have enough information collected through competitors’ analysis, internal brand audit, customer surveys, and the creative brief. This would be the time to transform all your textual information into visual representations of your brand. You have all the emotional perceptions of your brand in hand; now, your challenge is to present those emotions through visuals – capable of strengthening the sentiments.
Logo: 

Creating a brand identity is designing a complete system. Each component of this system has its significance and influences the others in its way, but the foremost among them is your brand’s logo design. You can adopt multiple techniques for designing an efficient logo. The most popular and effective is the old-school method, where you draw each of your ideas and concepts on a piece of paper using sketch pencils. You add and subtract ideas, incorporate feedback, and furnish the design until it becomes captivating enough to deliver your brand’s message and capture the audience’s attention. Later, you can get it digitalized using available software.

Colors:

Once you’re done with the creation of a strong visual design, you can look out for the color shades and themes more conveniently. Emotions are a crucial part of color choice. Additionally, colors are a great source of creating differentiation and uniqueness within your brand.

Typography:

This is a tricky stage in the creation of brand identity.  It requires you to use a cohesive language to represent your brand. Typography should be seen in the shapes of your brands’ logo. You might think of it as a usual thing, but typography does possess emotional bonding. It has to be designed in sheer compliance with your brand’s core values. It shall be able to communicate the persona of your brand efficiently.

Design System

This is the most negligible point in most of the brand identities. Brands often assume that the mere existence of an effective logo design, perfect combination of colors, and complimentary typography is enough for success. However, blending all of them using an incredible design system is the most significant part.

Since your brand identity is meant to communicate with the audience and deliver your message with perfection, it is crucial to blend them in a manner that is interesting for the audience.

Your primary objective shall be the creation of an incredible layout – capable of flexing the communication as well as navigation. Focus on creating a balance among your content, graphics, and design for perfection.

Step 5. Create an Effective Brand Style Guide:

A very common mistake in branding is neglecting the creation of brand style guide. You arrange everything with perfection – carry out research, strategize each element, implicate the plans in designing, but do not use them effectively.

A brand style guide created with efficiency is what can save you from the said nightmare. Create an easy to read and understand guide with a descriptive explanation of each part. Keep it accessible for all your design and marketing departments. Moreover, keep updating the guide as per the changes in your internal as well as external environment.

Keep Your Identity Up-to-Date: 

Creating a strong brand identity is, no doubt, an overwhelming task. A lot of time, effort, and budget need to be invested in the process. Therefore, keeping it updated can save you from a lengthy process in the future.

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