Yes, while this may be true, it’s only part of the branding mix. Images help people associate products, services, and causes more quickly. Humans have been branding since we discovered how to walk upright. Figures on walls were symbols of a story. The same idea is still present in a modern branding strategy. Strong brands have color palettes, shapes, lines, and various icons (i.e. animals, fruits, trees, etc.) which helps their target audience distinguish them from their competitors.
Branding is as much about interpersonal human interactions as it is about visuals and advertisements. In the past, organizations could only get feedback from customers via mail, phone calls, surveys, and other traditional forms of data collection. Today, with the surge of social media and other trending digital technologies, organizations can amplify their messages to the masses while simultaneously interacting with their audiences at an interpersonal level. Brands who communicate with their audience by listening, engaging, and taking action, strengthen and enhance the brand perception of their organization.
When people feel that a brand listens to their needs, that’s when they begin to trust them. Organizations must preserve trust in their brands at all costs. Otherwise, what’s the point of having a brand if people don’t trust what you do? Businesses have lost sales, non-profits have lost loyal donors and volunteers, and public figures have had their names ruined all because people lost trust.
All the points listed above are essential to creating a strong brand. To illustrate how TriVision incorporated these three points in branding campaigns we have implemented for our clients in the past, here is the brand revamp we launched for the United States Export-Import Bank of the United States.
The Export-Import Bank faced a challenge. How could it merge its traditional conservative traditions with a fresh and contemporary aesthetic that would encourage potential investors? To achieve this goal, EXIM Bank collaborated with TriVision on the strategy and visual design of a new brand.
TriVision conducted interviews with customers, employees, and the executive board to generate standout, multi-perspective concepts for the new logo. Based on those findings, we then modified the concepts and presented multiple designs to focus groups for further refinement.
However, the revamped logo was just the first phase in an ongoing shift of the Bank’s visual identity. TriVision developed the design template for several different flyers and brochures (including Small Business, Policy, and International) and a style guide on how to properly use the brand. This style guide was the main tool in implementing the new brand, and covered every topic from the initial use of the logo placement to the percentage value used for the tagline.
The impact of the new brand has been very positive. Employees, stakeholders and business affiliates have embraced the new brand, whose visual identity gave a consistent design direction to different entities within the EXIM Bank.