What is a Brand System?
Branding refers to the marketing process through which a business creates a unique name, design, or symbol that translates into its identity. This process helps in connecting particular products or services to a given company. Additionally, it helps create an impression on the clients and distinguishes your products and services from competitors. Every business aims at having a brand that stands out from the rest.
For your brand to stand out, it should have appealing visuals. The human brain tends to process information faster based on what they see than what they read. As a result, you should enhance your brand's visual appeal, and this is where visual-branding comes in. It refers to what visually communicates with the clients. It focuses on logos, designs, website layout, fonts, and much more.
When designing a visual brand, there are two terms that you should be familiar with; brand system and brand identity. Here we look at the definition of the two terms, their differences as well as their deliverables.
Google is a great example of a successful brand system and brand identity implication.
What Is a Brand System?
It is a collection of visual and verbal elements that make up a meaningful unit of a company's or organization's brand. It provides a conceptual and visual roadmap for your brand that communicates who you are and what clients should expect from your business. Below are some of the verbal and visual elements of a brand.
• Language: Includes the tone, mission, and vision of your business.
• Color: The usage of primary and secondary colors.
• Typography: The use of organized font hierarchies.
• Imagery: The consistency in the use of artwork styles.
• Iconography: Symbols that help identify the brand.
• Logo: Where and how to use different variations of the brand mark.
Creating a Branding System
While there are multiple elements needed in creating a brand, you can start with a few of them and then expand over time. Some businesses need a brand that will remain stable in the long-term, while others need something to help them gain traction in the short run. Therefore, the size and market coverage of your businesses affects the creating of your brand.
Given that we live in a dynamic world dominated by technological changes and advancements, most brands now have a core shelf life of approximately not more than five years. This low shelf life means that you may need to occasionally change some aspects of your brand to align with the evolving world's needs.
Branding System Vs. Identity
While a branding-system focuses on both the visual and verbal elements of a brand, brand identity majorly focuses on the visual aspects. The identity is more about what your clients can see; the logo design, fonts, colors, packaging, and graphics. Generally, the branding-system offers a generalized view of the business, while identity is more specific to the visuals.
What Are the Deliverables for the Branding-System?
The deliverables here include:
• Naming: Every business needs a unique name. New companies may be seeking to create a new name, while existing ones may consider a change.
• Identity design: An identity that will help you connect with your potential and existing clients.
• Communication pillar: A messaging or communication framework for use anytime you want to communicate.
• Brand strategy: An idea about how the brand should be represented in the market for enhanced efficiency and consistency.
• Competitive analysis: Understanding the market options available to your target audience. Competitive analysis helps you in coming up with a well-calculated plan to capture their attention.
What Are the Deliverables of Brand Identity?
• Logo: The primary identifier of your business. It is advisable to go for a flexible logo design that can be manipulated in different settings.
• Stationery: Your identity should include stationery such as business cards, envelopes, letterheads, contracts, and invoices, among others.
• Signage: Signage helps in communicating your brand further. However, it is advisable to avoid tag lines when building signages as they can easily change with time.
• Logo wear: It is now a trend that most companies offer give-a-ways, including logo wear as part of their launch. When it comes to your logo wear, ensure that the artwork is correctly done and everything is in line with your brand.
How Can a Brand System Bring More Consistency to the Business Brand?
Brand consistency refers to a business's ability to maintain efficient communication and positioning in line with the values and elements that make up its identity. A brand can bring more consistency by maintaining a recurrent use of elements such as:
• Tone of voice
• Logo positioning
• Slogans identified with the business
• Graphics that identify with the business
• Maintaining the company's value when participating in events and campaigns
In conclusion, visual-branding is an essential aspect of businesses as it acts as a silent communication and marketing tool to potential and existing customers. When designing your brand, ensure that its visual and verbal elements help your business stand out from your competitors.
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