Branding is the process of creating a unique and memorable image for a company in the mind of consumers. One of the most powerful ways to do this is through visual branding.
Visual branding has five key elements – consistency, logo, typography, color, and imagery. We’ll walk through these five elements, as well as go over some examples of companies who excel at visual branding.
This means: using the same logo and fonts across all products and #marketing materials, sticking to a color scheme, and even using similar imagery online and offline.
Consistency is what establishes a brand in the mind of consumers – seeing a logo over and over again helps consumers recognize and trust a brand. And hopefully, they’ll associate good feelings with that brand.
The company has had the same logo since it’s creation in 1886, and fire-engine red is inherently associated with their classic product. The logo and red show up in every ad, on every bottle of soda, and on their online presence. And starting in 2016, not only do cans of classic Coke, Diet Coke, Coke Zero, and Coke Life share the logo and red color – they share a consistent design.
A great logo that can be used on products, online, in print materials, and more, is essential to every business, no matter the industry. Logos are generally the first thing consumer associate with a company, and can help them decide whether or not to purchase a product.
Having a secondary logo isn’t absolutely necessary, but can be nice to use in place of the primary logo on swag and #social media. Generally, the secondary logo is part of the primary logo, or a symbol inspired by the primary logo.
One very important thing to remember when choosing a logo: while the logo may typically be shown in color, it is essential that it also work in plain black and white.
There are so many times a logo will need to be used in black and white, such as on other websites, certain graphics, and even faxes (old school, we know).
Their primary logo is Nike with a swoosh symbol, and both Nike and the swoosh can (and are) used by themselves. Their logo also looks great in both black and white, as well as any other color.
Most companies opt to have a primary font, that is used for headers and titles, and a secondary font that is used for paragraph text. These fonts can be part of the same font family, or they can be different. One or both can even be from the same font family as the font used in the logo. It can also be useful to have a third font that is used for phrases that need emphasis – in this case, the font is often an italicized or bold version of the primary or secondary font.
In their email marketing, the primary font is an all caps italic serif, the secondary font is a clean sans serif, and the third, emphasis font is a bold version of the secondary font.
It is one of the easiest things for consumers to associate with a brand, and different colors convey different feelings – which can be handy for creating desired reactions to products.
Generally, a company will have 1-3 primary colors and 2-3 secondary colors. It is also completely acceptable to just have one primary color. It can be helpful to consider color theory when determining the best colors to use for a company.
Their primary color is canary yellow, and their secondary colors are fire-engine red and white. Consumers definitely associate the iconic yellow arches with McDonald’s, especially when thinking of fast food.
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