Branding gets tossed around so often, people forget what it means. Branding is defined as the promotion of a company, product, or idea through advertising and creative design. That’s accurate but not necessarily precise. Brand-building is much more than just designing logos and running ads. Logical Position’s digital creative services professionals have learned a thing or two on our digital marketing journey. So to help you on your search for more creative branding, here’s an article debunking 4 myths about building a brand.
Myth #1–Branding Is the Same as Advertising
Don’t confuse branding with advertising. The best way to think about it is this: branding is the message while advertising is the vehicle that delivers it. And yes, the two must support one another across all channels. From another angle, it’s important to diversify without risking dilution. Don’t put your brand on every available channel. Position your brand where your target audience hangs out. For instance, does a company selling large industrial machinery need to create daily Tik Tok dance videos? Hm, maybe not.
Myth #2–Branding Needs to Be 100% Consistent
Consistency is important. People need to connect your brand with certain colors, shapes, words, and tone. Veering away from these elements can sometimes cause confusion in customers’ minds. But that doesn’t have to mean getting stuck in a rut. You can stay fresh and relevant without damaging your brand. Alterations in color or design to reflect special events, holidays, and milestones, for instance, can add excitement around your brand’s offerings. Adaptation is key. Your brand and “voice” can stay consistent for long-time customers, but creative flexibility is what attracts new brand followers.
Here’s an example using Logical Position’s own internal branding. At LP, our Brand & Marketing Team creates and manages different logo treatments for special times of the year. Whether it’s to support our allyship for Pride Month, commemorate Black History Month, or celebrate the holidays, this brand inconsistency demonstrates our ability to remain relevant and flexible to societal changes, while visually supporting causes important to our staff, organization, and under-represented groups. This visual flexibility is the part of brand tone (or ethos) we’ve set for ourselves here at LP, and just one of the many examples where it’s ok to deviate from the expected brand stylization.
Default LP Logo
Black History Month LP Logo
Pride Month LP Logo
Myth #3–It’s All About the Logo
Spoiler: it isn’t! Obsessing over and altering your logos can become a bad habit. Updating logos is a necessity, and minor tweaks can attract new interest. Nevertheless, a fancy new logo won’t make up for a neglected foundation. Great branding means renovating your brand’s ethos–the why behind your brand, and the core beliefs guiding your company and inspiring customer support. Your logo is the book cover, while your foundation is your story–and the story is what brings people to you and keeps them loyal.
Myth #4–Your Brand Must Mirror Your Competitors’
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but do you really want to flatter your competition? Many businesses fall into the habit of mirroring their rivals. Offer what customers demand, of course, or your competitors will. But success comes when you differentiate your brand from others. To remain relevant and memorable, your brand must follow its own path. What makes your brand unique? Offering everything under the sun, or mirroring what your competitors do, can dilute what makes your brand exceptional. Compete, don’t copy!
A Side Note about Brand Managers…
Brand managers are important, and they help keep your brand consistent and on track to ensure your brand resonates with customers. They don’t have the final word, however. Truth is, brand managers will never be 100% in control of the brand standards. Why? Because consumers and customers largely influence the ebbs and flows of the business needs supporting the brand. A brand shouldn’t stagnate, it should evolve and grow with customers’ demands and needs. A brand manager is aware of this and knows what to do when the market changes.
Branding and You
The idea that branding is just for big companies is a major misconception. Not true. Any company, of any size, can benefit from better branding with the above suggestions. Staying true to your brand’s ethos while differentiating when necessary is a fine balance. But, with the right help and professional insight, your brand can thrive. Logical Position’s creative team can provide thoughtful, tailor-made logos and other branding and design services that suit your brand’s needs. Contact us for a consultation on our professional branding services and experience a collaborative approach to creating your brand!