Crafting Emotional Brand Identities
Defining and recognizing yourself or your business is a necessary feat today. But what does your brand identity actually speak about you? We live in an age where judgements and assumptions are created so swiftly, it is important to make sure the it is right ones being made.
In such a brief amount of time, we ask ourselves, "Who are you? What are your values? Where do you stand? Will you and I be a good fit?" There are a thousand questions. All in the quickest of glances.
Brands for Individuals & Business
Both individuals and businesses have brand identities, whether or not they have been deliberately crafted. Many times when a business owner chooses the DYI path (or perhaps is involved in the design process) they will make choices without much thought. But those choices feel right. One may choose a specific colour because they claim they enjoy it, but why do they enjoy that colour?
Let's look at an example: a hardware company owner chooses to create is brand identity on his own. He finds a default image of a hammer, colours it red, and chooses a very small script font for his company name. He places it on an orange background, and is satisfied with it. Done.
The issue with this hardware store identity is that there is no story being told. The hammer logo is generic and not specific to the business's goals and values. The cursive font may remind one of a love letter, which may be not entirely fitting. Red is a very bold, strong colour that may remind one of passion or violence; is that the intended purpose? All of these little signifiers have impact on the visual identity as a whole, and will arouse a response in the viewer… even if they are not completely aware of it.
Connecting the Brand with an Emotional Response
It is a designer's task to visually tell the story of the brand and evoke an emotional response that will fit the brand's principles. The design process is more than someone simply throwing around various image and colours until something fits. It is about crafting something that is beautiful, narrative, uncomplicated, and most importantly accurate.
When thinking about your brand, identify with the elements of design and the elements of a brand, and determine if each one of the components you use is being portrayed in the most truthful and representative manner. Are elements combining in a way that is faithful to your desired image? What emotions does it induce? What is the experience you gives your clients/customers, and do you think you are representing that experience authentically?
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