Stand out from the crowd.
Let your essence emerge
What is a brand?
The definitions are many and often wrong, because many believe that the brand is the logo, therefore a concrete element. But a brand is something more, particularly tied to emotions. In fact, the brand is what people think, feel and say about us (our business, our company). To give life and a look to a brand it is necessary to set up a brand strategy, meaning a long-term plan for the systematic development of the brand in line with a corporate strategy, which aims to achieve a series of goals that result in the customers identifying and preferring your brand.
A branding strategy therefore revolves around all those intangible elements that are behind your brand and that guide its essence, awareness and message. This is why it cannot just be the sum of logo, color palette and other graphic elements which, while important, are not enough on their own.
The stages of designing your brand
Like any strategy worth of respect, the research stage cannot be skipped. In this case, too, it will be essential to dedicate the right time to understanding together what your target audience and target market are, and, let’s not forget, who your competitors are. Just as important is the Brand Discovery stage, meaning the stage where we will guide you in the discovery and definition of the essence, values and personality of your brand.
At this stage we will have gathered all the essential information we need to build our design strategy, which will cover both the visual and communication aspects, the naming, the message and the tone of voice. Finally we will reach the practical part, in which we’ll finalize the visual language – logo, key images, fonts, color palette – and deliver the brand book, a guide manual in which we provide information on how to remain faithful to the brand identity.
Why is branding important?
Competition is ruthless, especially online. You risk disappearing into the crowd, getting lost among the many without managing to stand out or have a way for your clients to find you.
The design of a brand is important because, by developing the identity of your brand, you can build a reputation in your target market and create a solid and long-lasting connection with your clients: if your essence is authentic and well structured, you will be able to not only engage but also retain your audience, which will share the values of your brand. This way the credibility of your brand will grow, as will your visibility – never forget the power of positive word of mouth! – and, at the same time, you will manage to best reach your business goals.
Designing the Oltremare Brand
We took care of guiding the Oltremare sports village in designing their brand, a path that led to the creation of a unique and recognizable brand identity. From the idea we moved on to the strategic analysis of the project and its identity, to create a coordinated image that could be applied on digital and offline channels, which would convey the essence, values and message of the project in a coherent way.
How we build your Brand identity
We think of a brand as if it was a person, with its own physical appearance, personality and quirks. Brand identity is the combination of these elements, as it is made up by the physical characteristics – the visible ones such as the logo, the name, the colors – and by the psychological characteristics, such as the values and objectives. Together, all these elements create the brand identity, how the brand is perceived and recognized by the audience.
One stage of building the brand identity is more about the concept, based on analysis, study and comparison, while the other is more practical and direct, involving the visual component of the brand identity, which is comprised by various elements:
«An effective brand name can significantly contribute to the success of the product» says Philip Kotler in “Principles of Marketing“. This stage in fact involves choosing the name of the brand, which has to express the identity, position and characteristics of the brand itself. The name must be coherent with the identity that was built, which is why during the process of finding a name it is important to consider the associations that could be evoked in the mind of the client, the values and benefits conveyed by the word, as well as how it sounds, how easy it is to pronounce and memorize.
The logo is surely the aspect that first comes to mind when we talk about identity, and it is the first step in the brand identity process. This graphic element is the hallmark of a brand and has the purpose of representing it in a unique and recognizable way. The logo can be of various types, such as logotype, monogram or emblem – to give some examples – and the choice depends on what emerged from the brand design stage. Based on the logo then come other fundamental elements: the typography, meaning adopting a specific font, and the color palette, meaning the set of colors that best represent and evoke the brand.
An element that contributes to making the brand recognizable and memorable for the client. The payoff is a stage that accompanies the logo, which by its nature must be concrete, brief and instant. Its purpose is in fact to complete the corporate identity and, at the same time, to inspire or at least suggest something to your audience. In short, the payoff is an effective summary of the promises you have chosen to make to your clients.
This short text is used to make your clients instantly and deeply understand your brand: its essence, the values it believes in and carries and the benefits it wants to offer to its audience.
The creation of the coordinated image always accompanies the design of the brand and is an essential element of it. We can’t forget, in fact, all the elements tied to the brand and the logo that are needed in order to complete the brand identity and to convey it online – a website, a blog – and offline – business cards, presentations. These elements are the iconography and the illustrations, which are essential to support the communication of information relating to the brand values and strengths, as well as the services and products, if they are present.
The communication channels on which the brand can be conveyed are many and therefore, to better protect its identity, guidelines are needed for its correct application.
The brand book is a manual for applying all the elements that make up the brand identity – the logo, the iconography, the colors. A document that explains how the brand should be presented to the public and that contains practical instructions to ensure that all the visual aspects – and therefore the brand! – are always recognizable, on every communication channel.
The brand identity can be developed for a product but also for a company in its entirety, and in this case we would need to design all the elements with which the company communicates externally (logo, font, business cards, packs, letterhead, etc.). The construction of a coordinated corporate image is a complex process, because it aims to promote immediate recognition by users/customers and to convey the institutional message, all taking into account the history, mission and vision of the company.
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