What IS Branding anyway?

So often, small businesses come to me for a logo. And I explain that a logo does not exist in a vacuum. A logo comes with branding. Without branding, your ads would look like this:

What does this ad sell? who is its target audience? why would I, as a shopper, choose this clothing company over any other? It doesn’t look like anyone made any choices that would explain it to me.

Instead, a good ad might look something more like this:

Oh! I see the above image and now I see that this clothing company is a bit edgy – kinda interesting for a young nonconformer such as myself.

And behind the scenes is this: jarring typography, strongly contrasting colors, saturated photos, content that falls off the edge, overrides the background image and generally creates an unbalanced composition. THESE are the elements that give the image its personality. THESE are the elements that make up the brand.

Now let’s take another look at the little orange and purple logo. At this point, it’s more clear how this logo is really an icon that refers to the edginess and elements of the whole brand.

Simply put, your visual branding is a representation of the personality and goals of your business! And the logo is a shorthand message that reminds you of it.

The takeaway: when your graphic designer wants to do more than just a logo, she isn’t trying to con more money out of you. A good graphic designer knows that a logo is a succinct representation of an entire visual brand. Wherever your company has a visual presence, your brand should be there too.

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