What exactly is “branding”, anyway? It seems to be a word that is loosely defined in many ways by many different people, depending on their perspective.
First, a brand is more than your logo. It’s more than your color scheme and typography and patterns. It’s more than visual. It’s more than your voice. It’s more than your mission statement and goals and values and promises.
It’s all those things combined, shaped by your actions, and how it’s interpreted by your audience. In a way, your brand is perception; how people see you, what they think about you and how that makes them feel.
A healthy brand certainly starts with a framework that includes an identity, or logo, as a central piece. The visual representation of your brand is important, and helps influence the decisive first impression of your audience. Having a thoughtful, memorable logo with the right color palette and family of typography creates a representation of who you are and what you do. It gives your audience visual cues to understand your personality.
Investing in this process and creating a solid foundation for your brand is immeasurably valuable for the lifespan of your brand. If you don’t skimp on one thing, it should be this. All other materials will grow roots in the soil of this initial brand strategy and visual framework.
So really, everything you say and (most importantly) do influences and contributes to your brand. When it comes to your business, think through your purpose, your personality, your values and your goals in order to create the right environment for your brand to thrive in. Then set it free. Send it out into the world, work with integrity and see how your brand comes to life in the minds and lives of those who follow it.
A healthy brand is a robust, yet beautiful, living thing. It’s your only vehicle to get from where you are today to where you want to be in the future. Tend it well.