As an Art Director/graphic designer you automatically understand why a company’s brand is important because it is ingrained in us from day one of college. True fact, but that doesn’t mean that the company with a shudder-worthy logo understands its importance. One of my goals as a designer is to continuously educate clients about why design and marketing are two of the top things a business or company should focus on. I came across a beautifully written article on How Design written by Melissa Mazzoleni about the “4 Key Reasons Why Branding is Important,” based off a book called The Strategic Designer written by Dave Holston. I want to do my best at summing up why a company’s logo, identity, advertising and strategy are things to not just throw on the back burner.
Here we goooooo!!!
“Whether you’re a non-profit or a for-profit, your organization needs to compete for resources, funding and talent, and audience attention,” Mazzoleni wrote. To really gain that customer attention and “awe,” you need to stand out from your competition. If your prices, services and skill levels are very similar, what sets you apart? Your brand should mirror (when done correctly) your business’s strategic plan, customer service, tone and voice.
2. Brands provide a stable asset.
“Products might fail, companies are bought and sold, technologies change on a daily basis, but strong brands carry on through all these changes,” Mazzoleni wrote. A brand is really your company’s most stable asset. Using your brand along with strategic planning can act as a central hub for all decision making for future efforts in other areas. This stable asset will make your company continuously recognizable. Picture some of your favorite retail products that you always buy because you trust their brand. Ask yourself, why do you trust them? Maybe you trust them because they have worked for you, you have heard about them through word of mouth, or the way they present themselves. So while other brands come and go, that one brand will surpass them.
“Consider that the Coca-Cola brand has been around for more than 120 years, while most of the world’s other valued brands have existed for just 50 years, and most corporations only last 25 years.”
3. Brands provide value.
According to Dave Holston, the author of The Strategic Designer, the value of a total organization is divided among two different areas: intangible and tangible assets. Brands fall under the intangible assets. Intangible assets increased from 17 to 80 percent in overall corporate value between 1975 and 2003. Brands account for more than ⅓ of shareholder value according to Businessweek magazine. So when all is said and done, intangible assets are the most valuable to a corporation/business and brands are the MOST valuable within the intangible assets.
On another note, brands bring trust and a “face” to your business or corporation. It is what appeals to your target audience. It brings the company’s culture alive to the consumers.
Take our agency for example (Candeo Creative). Our brand basically represents the experience and culture of our company. We are fun, bright, clean and fresh. Most people can get a glimpse of what working with us is like just by seeing our brand and marketing efforts.
4. Brands set expectations.
Last but certainly not least, a brand will set the bar for your company. The world we live in is full of promises. From airline mechanics to teachers, we are promising to do a thorough job and be successful.
“We have an unspoken contract with the people we live and work with, that they will do what they say they’ll do. We have similar agreements with companies, products and services,”Dave Holston says.
As Melissa states, we see these brand promises on a daily basis. We have an expectation of an experience when we make our selection, which has already been determined through our previous decision-making steps of “awareness, interest, desire, and satisfaction.”
As a consumer, things that influence our decision-making processes are rarely anything to do with the product or service. Our experience with the product or service is based off what experience we have had with the advertising, brand identity and the environment in which we experienced it. How does your BRAND stand out?