Designers don’t create brands, they express them. Meaningful brands are created by people who lead organizations and who understand that every touch point with their customer is important. Branding is the visual manifestation and culmination of a company’s culture, its values, what it produces, and its relationship with customers and employees. The primary objective of a brand design program is to coordinate all visual aspects related to a company in order to present a strong identifiable image and position it in the economic and civic world in which it exists. This involves the articulation of the company’s culture, which will generate and determine the quality of everything from products to packaging, to communications and advertising campaigns. Branding is persuading outsiders to buy and insiders to believe. Good branding is aspirational and adds value.
Branding is a difficult process and organizations need to be ready for it. They need to be honest about themselves and open to advice. It’s the only way for a company to develop an authentic brand that will be embraced by their customers. Branding is also a fun and exciting process. When meeting with clients at the beginning of the branding process, and to put them in a positive state of mind, I often use the analogy that it’s like hanging out with your closest friends and naming your high school band – it can be whatever you envision it will be. Teenagers have a fearless sense of imagination. Business people have often forfeited their imaginations for the status quo. But, how often does a company have the opportunity to define itself? I encourage clients to think “big” and set a vision for the ultimate brand.