What is Brand Identity?
Brand identity refers to how a business wants to be perceived by consumers. All of the components that make up the brand are created to reflect the value the company is trying to portray and how it appeals to its customers. Brand identity differs from brand image, which refers to how customers actually perceive the brand.
Why is it important?
A successful brand identity is more than a simple representation of your company, it transforms your company image into powerful thoughts, emotions, and personal associations. It can breathe life into a company, helping to attract customers looking to discover what they’ve been missing. Successful brand identity is increasingly vital to the success of your business.
Steps to Brand Identity
A vision statement describes what you want the company to become. The statement should be one sentence in length and be something you find inspirational. These are some questions to help develop your vision statement:
- What products or services are most important to your customers?
- What products or services would your company never offer?
- What is different about doing business with your company?
- How do your customers describe your company?
- Where do you want the company to be in five years?
A mission statement defines the purpose of the company. It should be simple, to the point, and include language that’s easily understood. Customers should find your mission statement motivational. These are some questions to help develop your mission statement:
- What emotions do your customers feel when they come into contact with your product or service?
- How would you describe its personality if your company were a person?
A brand’s personality describes the way it thinks, speaks, and behaves. It injects human characteristics into the business. Examples can be seen with the difference in perception between Apple and IBM. Apple users may be perceived as young and hip. IBM users may be perceived as mature and corporate. What personality do you want customers to associate with your brand?
- Are you fun and carefree?
- Are you serious and rigid?
- Are you the mullet (business in front, party in the back) of your industry?
A value proposition is a short statement that clearly defines your product or service’s unique value, and how it is a benefit to customers. It should define your target audience, the category in which your brand exists, and list a clear service benefit. In addition, your value proposition needs to set your brand apart from your competition while it instills confidence that the brand will deliver on its promise. Consider this when writing your value proposition:
- To which target market, demographic, or persona are you speaking?
- Which market segment are is your product or service going to serve?
- What is your brand “promising” to the consumer?
- What sets you apart from your competition and why should consumers care?