Have you ever had the design in your head or a process but didn't know how to tell the designer without sounding slow? When it comes to branding there are so many terms floating around. If you're one of our connections then you've probably heard one or all of these. The point is that a lot of people don't know the proper terminology and how to communicate with their graphic designer because that's not your lane. I want to help you, help us through. Here are a few brand terms to help you better communicate with your design team. Good luck. Leave us some questions in the comments if you need examples or elaboration.
A brand isn’t a tangible thing. You could never point to any part of your business and say, “That’s my brand.” A brand is a combination of marketing strategies, design, values, and more (most of which are listed below!) that come together to communicate what your business is about to your audience and influence their perception of what it is that you do.
So if a ‘brand’ is a noun, “branding’ is a verb, we cool? So when people say they’re “branding” their business, they usually mean they’re in the process of strategically selecting all the bits and pieces that go together to form a brand. Unless they haven’t read this list, and they’re misusing the term!
What makes you, you? Your personality, the way you talk, the way you look. What you value, your ethical code, and the way you treat others. If that makes up your personal identity, the same kinds of things make up the identity of your brand. What you value in your business, the way you present your business, and all of the ways you communicate your message make up the identity of your Brand.
A visual identity is a part of what makes up your brand identity and consists specifically of all the imagery that represents your brand. This can include things like logos, photographs, the designs on your brand collateral, social media graphics. They should all present a cohesive look and feel.
A logo is a visual mark that represents your business - a good one should represent some of the things we talked about in your Brand Identity in a visual way.
So, technically, marketing covers a huuuuuge scope and I can’t possibly tell you everything about it in one short paragraph, and I definitely recommend visiting someone like Halley @ Evolve and Succeed who is a marketing genius for more info, but put really simply, Marketing consists of all of the strategy and action that goes into promoting and selling your product or service to your audience. As it relates to Branding, it is important to consider what kinds of messages that your brand communicates to your audience, and if it is doing so successfully.
These are all of the additional extra visuals that come together to support your logo in creating your Visual Identity. These include colour palettes, patterns, photography, icons/graphic elements, fonts and typefaces, illustrations, etc.
“Collateral” items are marketing materials such as business cards, letterheads, product packaging, thank you cards, stickers and labels, content upgrades and PDF documents and more that are designed to match your Visual Identity.
If you speak with a designer or encounter a design contract, the concept of ‘revisions’ will probably come up. Basically, revisions are a designer term for ‘rounds of changes’. This tells you how many times you can request changes for each design element before your designer will have to start charging you extra. Most designers work ‘revisions’ into the price of your quote so that you don’t have to pay more each time you ask for something to be changed. For example, your Logo design might come with:
One set of drafts
One Finalised drawing
Two rounds of revision
This means that your designer will present you with some logo drafts, you’ll tell them which one you like or what you think needs changing. They’ll then present you with one of the logos in a more finished form, and you get two chances after this to make changes.
Re-branding means you have an existing brand, but for a number of reasons (such as no longer being able to DIY, you recognize that your brand is not working with your marketing, etc), you have decided to completely overhaul the strategies, visuals, or both that your brand has been using and present a new brand to your audience. This can be tricky to navigate your audience through as people naturally resist change, so if you’re considering re-branding, definitely consider speaking to a brand designer to evaluate your options.
Your voice is the what comes across every time someone heard you on video, reads an email from you, or flicks through your website or social media. It’s more than just the words you type - it’s the strategic selection of words that match your Brand Identity, and convey your values, vision, and marketing messages to your audience.
For more Brand terms, check out our What is Branding 101 ebook at iconicminds.net/academy or sign up for our course, open enrollment reopening soon.