Effective branding is what sets you apart from your competition. Branding is what makes your business memorable and appeals to your target audience. In short, the job of your branding is to create a robust and positive perception of your company. It entails elements such as your logo, colors, values, mission statement, and communications–to name a few. This post will dive deeper into the difference between and importance of brand strategy and brand identity.
The difference between branding and brand identity
Your brand is not just pretty colors, fonts, and logos. Although those are essential elements of your brand identity, they are just a piece of the branding puzzle. An easy way to think about it is your brand identity is how your business looks. Your brand (holistically) is the way your business makes people feel.
Many new business owners assume they need a logo to get started. It’s easy to imagine that the beautiful branding identities we know and love are just visual elements, but it goes deeper. In reality, your branding combines your brand strategy and your brand identity. After thorough research and business planning, we recommend creating a visual identity.
Your branding showcases the heart of your business.
Through thoughtful brand strategy, we reveal the why behind your brand. This comes to life through your mission, vision, and values. These are not only blatantly communicated on your website for clients/customers to read, but they are woven into all decisions you make in your business.
How you price your products or services, communicate with clients or customers, source materials, hire, and represent your brand voice online should all align with the heart of your business.
We encourage you to use your mission, vision, and values as your north star to make business decisions. They can serve as your moral compass and make strategic business decisions easier.
How understanding your target audience impacts your branding
As you dive into brand strategy, it’s crucial to conduct market research. We need to deeply understand your target audience’s demographics, psychographics, needs, and desires.
If we can understand the problems they need to have solved, how they make purchasing decisions, and the language they use to describe their problems, we can access buyer psychology’s holy grail.
Are you starting to see how branding goes beyond a logo? Before considering how your branding shows up visually, considerable research and understanding are required.
Competitor research impacts your branding.
Branding also includes understanding your competitors. Here are a few questions to consider as you conduct your brand strategy research:
- What problems does the competition solve well for my target audience?
- What sets their target audience apart from mine?
- In what ways do they appeal to my target audience?
- What problems does the competition not solve well for my target audience?
- How will my price structure compare to theirs?
- What will set my brand apart from them?
- How does their messaging resonate with my target audience?
- How can I make my messaging and branding stand out?
If you can find a gap in the market (solve a problem your competitors can’t) or differentiate your brand from competitors, you’ll set your business up for success. We recommend conducting competitor research every year to ensure you’re still uniquely appealing to your target audience as new competition enters your market.
Branding takes time, energy, and strategy.
Not everyone is interested in conducting their own market research, developing a business strategy, and creating your brand from scratch. You know where to find us if you’re ready to make a brand of your (and your ideal client’s) dreams!
Through our design-intensive experience, we will efficiently develop your design, web design, or other supporting elements in just TWO DAYS. Hence, you walk away with something you’re proud of. By the end of your intensive day, you’ll receive design materials and build a tangible strategy & crystal clear vision that will leave you singing from the rooftops.