Identity

Apple Computer

Logo, brand and identity differences

· Branding, Identity

The difference between a Logo, Brand and Identity?

A question that seems to come up a lot in brand development is, “what’s the difference between a logo, identity and a brand?” After all, people often use them as interchangeable synonyms everyday. “Check out our new brand,” or “we are going through a re-design of our brand,” or my favourite, “do you do branding?”

A logo is not your brand, nor is it your identity. Logo design, identity design and branding all have different roles, that together, form a perceived image for a business or product.

There has been some recent discussion on the web about this topic, about your logo not being your brand. Although this may be true, I haven’t seen any clarification of the differences between ‘brand’, ‘identity’ and ‘logo’. I wish to rectify this.

What is Brand? – The perceived emotional corporate image as a whole.
What is Identity? – The visual aspects that form part of the overall brand.
What is a Logo? – A logo identifies a business in its simplest form via the use of a mark or icon.

What is a Logo?

A logo is for… identification.

A logo identifies a company or product via the use of a mark, flag, symbol or signature. A logo does not sell the company directly nor rarely does it describe a business. Logo’s derive their meaning from the quality of the thing it symbolises, not the other way around – logos are there to identity, not to explain. In a nutshell, what a logo means is more important than what it looks like.

To illustrate this concept, think of logos like people. We prefer to be called by our names – James, Dorothy, John – rather than by the confusing and forgettable description of ourselves such as “the guy who always wears pink and has blonde hair”. In this same way, a logo should not literally describe what the business does but rather, identify the business in a way that is recognisable and memorable.

It is also important to note that only after a logo becomes familiar, does it function the way it is intended to do much alike how we much must learn people’s names to identify them.

The logo identifies a business or product in its simplest form.

What is a Brand?

A brand is the relationship between an organisation and an audience.

You can’t brand something. You earn your brand. A brand is the reward for the hard work of building real, passionate relationships with your audience. These relationships lay a foundation for the creation and delivery of value in today’s marketplace.

Many people believe a brand only consists of a few elements – some colours, some fonts, a logo, a slogan and maybe  some music added in too. In reality, it is much more complicated than that. You might say that a brand is a ‘corporate image’.

The fundamental idea and core concept behind having a ‘corporate image’ is that everything a company does, everything it owns and everything it produces should reflect the values and aims of the business as a whole.

It is the consistency of this core idea that makes up the company, driving it, showing what it stands for, what it believes in and why they exist. It is not purely some colours, some typefaces, a logo and a slogan.

As an example, let’s look at the well known IT company, Apple. Apple as a company, projects a humanistic corporate culture and a strong corporate ethic, one which is characterised by volunteerism, support of good causes & involvement in the community. These values of the business are evident throughout everything they do, from their innovative products and advertising, right through to their customer service. Apple is an emotionally humanist brand that really connects with people – when people buy or use their products or services; they feel part of the brand, like a tribe even. It is this emotional connection that creates their brand – not purely their products and a bite sized logo.

What is Identity design?

One major role in the ‘brand’ or ‘corporate image’ of a company is its identity.

In most cases, identity design is based around the visual devices used within a company, usually assembled within a set of guidelines. These guidelines that make up an identity usually administer how the identity is applied throughout a variety of mediums, using approved colour palettes, fonts, layouts, measurements and so forth. These guidelines ensure that the identity of the company is kept coherent, which in turn, allows the brand as a whole, to be recognisable.

The Identity or ‘image’ of a company is made up of many visual devices:

  • A Logo (The symbol of the entire identity & brand)
  • Stationery (Letterhead + business card + envelopes, etc.)
  • Marketing Collateral (Flyers, brochures, books, websites, etc.)
  • Products & Packaging (Products sold and the packaging in which they come in)
  • Apparel Design (Tangible clothing items that are worn by employees)
  • Signage (Interior & exterior design)
  • Messages & Actions (Messages conveyed via indirect or direct modes of communication)
  • Other Communication (Audio, smell, touch, etc.)
  • Anything visual that represents the business.

All of these things make up an identity and should support the brand as a whole. The logo however, is the corporate identity and brand all wrapped up into one identifiable mark. This mark is the avatar and symbol of the business as a whole.

Keep your Brand Identity strong

Designing a successful brand identity takes a lot of work and collaboration. To keep your team on the same page and empower them to do the best job possible, and if you’re feeling overwhelmed or don’t have the resources to take on the project yourself, we’d love to chat about how to help you through the struggle.

Networkingproject enquires
or say ‘hola’ – info@aldershots.com

Bosh-Logo-Design

BOSH identity design

· Identity

BOSH identity design

Aldershots is sharing a MASSIVE IDENTITY DESIGN WIN!

This week we signed off on an identity design for local small business owner Michael Nelson. Working alongside the driven entrepreneur from South Australia, we created a handcrafted identity for Michael’s project, BOSH.

BOSH is a card game which allows people to play with words and expose them to how words are made. Each player gets to pick a card with one of 300 words from different cultures, across the globe. Reading the word aloud, telling the other players where the word comes from, and what kind of word it is (ie verb, noun, adjective).

The other players then have a minute to make up a definition for the word, and then the player whose turn it is reads all the definitions aloud.  Each player then votes on which they think is the correct definition, and if they vote for the correct one, they get double points. 

Sounds exciting right? Well, what are your thoughts on our latest identity design?

Networkingproject enquires or say ‘hola’ – info@aldershots.com