What is brand design?

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Marcelo Smith

Brand Designer

Marcelo Smith is a brand designer, content creator, and founder of Fun Studio, a brand design agency that helps businesses build powerful brands that stand out and connect with their audience.

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Table of Contents

Cover with brand identity elements for Gravity.
Cover with brand identity elements for Gravity.

Table of Contents

An in-depth guide of what it means to design a brand in 2023

Brand design is the process of creating a unique personality for a company or product. It shapes a company’s identity, builds customer loyalty, and creates differentiation from competitors. In this article, we’ll look at the key elements of brand design and the steps for developing an effective brand design strategy.

First thing first...

What is a Brand ?

BMW logo

A brand is more than just a company name or logo. It’s the perception people have of a company, product, or service. A brand encompasses every interaction a customer has with a company, from the first time they hear the name to the way they feel after using the product or service.

What is a Brand Identity?

What is brand strategy?
A brand identity is the visual and emotional representation of a brand, including its logo design, color palette, typography, imagery, and tone of voice. It helps to differentiate a brand from competitors, create a unique look and feel, and build an emotional connection with the brand’s audience.
You can think of the brand Identity as the starting point of any brand, but there are several layers more to any brand, including marketing, brand PR, brand positioning and more, so it’s important to differentiate the two.

Similar terms you might hear

Corporate Identity:

A corporate identity or corporate image is the manner in which a corporation, firm or business enterprise presents itself to the public.

Visual Identity

Visual Identity refers to the visual aspects of identity in an organizational communication, leaving out all non-visual aspects of the brand’s identity.

Elements of Brand Identity Design

Every Brand Identity shares some basic elements. The brand identity design can encompass a huge spectrum of different areas from social media to motion graphics or physical installations, but here are some of the basics that any brand needs:

1. Logo Design

A logo is basically a symbol, picture, or other graphic element that represents a company, brand, or organization.

2. Color Palette

A brand’s color palette is the selection of colors that are part of the brand identity. A good color palette will help your brand stand out and be memorable, so it’s important to choose your colors wisely! Plus, consistency is key – using the same colors across all your brand assets helps create a strong and cohesive brand identity.

3. Typography

Get the best selection at Adobe Fonts

Different fonts communicate different feelings, and a good typography selection will help your brand stand out and be memorable. Employing the same typography throughout all of your brand materials will also help the brand stay consistent at every touchpoint.

4. Visuals and Imagery

Other graphic resources can be included as part of the brand identity, such as patterns, illustrations, social media profiles, layout templates or photography and art direction. 

All these elements can usually be found in a document or online in the Brand Identity Guidelines

What are Brand Identity Guidelines?

Brand identity guidelines are a set of rules that define how a brand should be represented visually and verbally. They ensure consistency across all brand touchpoints, from advertising to social media to packaging. Guidelines cover elements such as the logo, typography, color palette, imagery, and tone of voice. They are critical for building customer recognition and trust and are useful for businesses of all sizes.

Examples of Brand Guidelines

Starbucks brand guidelines (Starbucks Creative Expression)

Starbucks

Starbucks even has a separate website that covers the different use cases of the logo and brand assets and showcases some inspirational examples of the brand in use.

Spotify logo.
Spotify brand guidelines for developers (Spotify Design Guidelines)

Spotify

Spotify is a good example of a Design Guideline aimed at developers building software products and integrations with their platform.

Netflix brand guidelines (Netflix Brand Assets)

Netflix

The Netflix logo is constantly used as an overlay on different backgrounds, making it important to specify the correct usage of the logo in this context.

Why having a strong brand is important

👁️ Recognition and Awareness

A strong brand needs to always be recognizable to stay top of mind for it’s audience. Recognition involves consistent use of visual elements and messaging, while awareness requires effective marketing efforts. Together, they build brand loyalty, trust, and credibility.

💍 Customer Loyalty

By providing a consistent and positive experience, brands can build trust and long-lasting relationships with customers, leading to repeat business and positive word-of-mouth recommendations.

🏃 Competitive Advantage

A strong brand provides a competitive advantage by differentiating your business from competitors and influencing customer perceptions. It allows you to charge premium prices, enter new markets, and create new opportunities for growth.

🎯 Consistency

Consistency in branding builds trust and recognition. A clear and consistent brand message, visual identity, and customer experience across all touchpoints and channels can help establish a strong brand that is easily identifiable and trusted by it’s customers.

🫶 Emotional Connection

By creating a brand identity that resonates with customers on an emotional level, brands can forge deeper, more meaningful relationships with their audience, leading to increased loyalty and advocacy for the brand.

Steps to Develop an Effective Brand Design

Male graphic designer working with tablet in office

1. Research and Analysis

Research and analysis are critical steps in developing effective brand design. They involve studying the market, target audience, competition, and industry trends to gain insights and develop a strategy that will guide the creation of a strong and impactful brand identity.

2. Define Brand Strategy

Defining brand strategy involves establishing the brand’s purpose, values, voice, and personality. This helps create a cohesive brand identity that is aligned with the business goals of the company.

3. Design Brand Identity

Designing brand identity involves creating visual elements that represent the brand, such as logo, color palette, typography, and imagery. These elements should align with the brand strategy and communicate the brand’s message and personality to the target audience.

4. Develop Brand Guidelines

Developing brand guidelines is essential to maintain consistency in brand design. Guidelines outline rules for using brand assets and establish standards for visual identity, messaging, and customer experience across all touchpoints, ensuring a cohesive and recognizable brand presence.

5. Implementation & Launch

The last step envolves putting the brand design into action. This includes creating branded assets, updating marketing materials, and training employees on brand guidelines. The launch should be executed strategically, using various channels to generate excitement and create brand awareness among the target audience.

My conclusions

today’s world, where businesses are competing for attention in an ever-expanding global market, brand design has become more crucial than ever. With the right approach to brand design, businesses can distinguish themselves from their competitors, build lasting relationships with customers, and drive growth in their industry.

As we continue to connect and engage with a wider audience, the need to stand out becomes even more important. That’s why, whether you’re a designer or a business owner, it’s essential to prioritize uniqueness and differentiation in your brand design.

So don’t be afraid to take risks, be creative, and think outside the box, because being distinctive and memorable is your strongest asset!

Need a brand design for your business?

At Fun Studio we design logos and complete brand identities to help your business stand out.

Contact us to learn more!

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