Why You Need a Strategic Brand Identity and Likely Need to Change Your Logo
(Even if you think you already have one)
“Life isn’t fair” and business isn’t always either. Whether you like it or not, your business identity, logo, etc. will stop sending your intended message.
Mediums Change, Trends Change
When I describe how many businesses need to refresh their visual identity people (especially business owners) typically recoil (literally). I understand the resonating dissonance—in business and marketing we are always waxing on about “name recognition,” and “brand consistency.”
Typically when I encourage people to consider Coca-Cola, their utter disgust turns to curiosity. The global company is going on 150 years in business. When we consider Coca-Cola, we perceive an unchanging icon, but they have changed their literal logo 12 times. Surprising? Pepsi changed their logo 16 times.
If you still need more convincing do a Google image search for “Evolution of Brands.”
Name recognition and brand consistency are not accomplished by attempting to drill worn-out aesthetic practices into people’s heads. Rather consumers recognize names and the consistent influence of brands when we are intentional about appealing to them via the mediums and trends which are most prevalent.
Giants like Coca-Cola have built a branding legacy not by a stubborn rejection of mediums and trends at any cost, but by recognizing them and building a strategic and tactical brand identity in and around those prevailing norms.
Apple then and now:
Canon then and now:
It’s New, It’s Refreshing
We should be clear—we don’t promote blind acceptance of prevailing mediums and trends. Strategic branding is never this simple. But we have to acknowledge the prevailing mediums and trends before we can strategically craft our brand’s message utilizing the ever changing visual vocabulary that consumers are using.
Consumers enjoy seeing businesses that are intentional about remaining competitive and relevant.
Businesses always adapt their products and services. As a business owner, you know this does not mean a blind acceptance of every new product and service on the market. Nevertheless, consumers expect you to be in the know when it comes to ever-changing world of (insert your business here). That’s why they hire you—you know how to balance the tradition embedded in your business and its ever-advancing trends.
So why do we treat our brand and visual identity differently? Don’t take it personally, but just because you crafted your own business’ identity or branding does not mean it strategically represents you in today’s world.
We cannot emphasize this enough. We understand why business owners take their branding so personally: it represents you, everything you’ve worked for, everything you’ve poured your life into, if you change your image you’re selling out to fads, you’re compromising the integrity of your business.
But consider (again) Coca-Cola who built a legacy not by stubbornness, but by a strategic, new, constantly refreshing message that communicated the timelessness of their brand to each unique generation and market.
Styles Change, Expectations Change
My plumber doesn’t fix my mechanic’s car, and my mechanic doesn’t cook for my dietitian.
Remember how complicated we made your business sound earlier? Marketing is no less complicated despite that fact that every business owner feels pressure to also be in the business of marketing and design.
You do what you do best, and let us do what we do: not change you, but to communicate to your clients in their language what and who you really are.