The term branding is thrown around a lot these days. In an attempt to be as clear as possible we would like to say that we are not branding experts but rather brand identity designers.
To clarify… Put simply, “branding” is the total perception of a company. What people think of when they think about you. It encompasses everything people interact with when they encounter your company, magazine articles, the smell of your store, uniforms, the way your employees interact with customers. Yes, it also includes your logo, business cards, letterhead and website.
Identity design or “corporate identity” is just that your identity. As a subset of branding, it is focused on how people identify you as you and not somebody else. These are the tangible elements that you can see. These are some of the things that make up your identity:
A brand style guide is a document that records this identity. It keeps everyone on the right track, using the right fonts, color and more.
A logo is a mark that represents a company. Of all the visual parts that make up your identity, your logo is the strongest point of recognition. It doesn’t have to tell the world everything you do. It’s a quick tag or identifier. A red bullseye doesn’t reveal all the clothing, housewares, and food you can buy at Target. But it works as a stand-in for everything you know about Target. And if you knew nothing about Target, you could still make some guesses about the personality of the company by looking at the logo.