Monday, September 28, 2015

Brands and Identity

Brands create identities for organizations or their products or services.  One definition of identity is “the collective aspect of the set of characteristics by which a thing is definitively recognizable or known.”

To understand identity better, lets think about how identity is determined for people. A person is identified in the following ways:
  • His name
  • His body and face
  • His facial expressions
  • His voice
  • His mannerisms
  • What he wears
  • What he drives
  • How he carries himself
  • His personality
  • His beliefs
  • His attitudes
  • His values
  • His habits
  • His behaviors
  • His occupation
  • His hobbies
  • His fingerprints
  • His ocular scan
  • His DNA

How can these human identity attributes inform brand identity? Brands can have some of the same attributes, while they also have others. Here are some of a brand’s identity attributes:
  • Name
  • Icon
  • Type fonts
  • Color palette
  • Visual style
  • Other distinctive visual elements
  • Brand voice
  • Distinctive sounds
  • Jingles or theme songs
  • Distinctive scents
  • Distinctive textures
  • Personality
  • Beliefs
  • Attitudes
  • Values
  • Behaviors
  • Spokespeople
  • Characters

The idea is to create a brand identity that is multi-faceted, nuanced, robust, distinctive, likeable, compelling and consistently presented (with some room for spontaneity or surprise). Ultimately, the identity is intended to create recognition, recall, distinctiveness and likability. Each and every identity element should be able to encode and decode positive associations in people’s brains.

I wish you great success in crafting a compelling identity for your brand.