As a business owner, you’ve probably heard the terms brand identity and brand strategy before But what exactly are they? Or, more importantly, why do you need to know about them?
If you’re looking to establish a strong brand presence, understanding how brand identity and brand strategy interact is vital. After all. these two concepts play pivotal roles in shaping your brand’s image. I.e what your customers see, what your staff follow, and what your investors look for.
In this article, we’ll explore the differences between brand identity and brand strategy, and how they work together to build a more resilient brand. By the end, you’ll have a better understanding of these important concepts and how they can add value to your business.
What is Brand Identity?
Brand identity is the visual, verbal, and emotional representation of your business. It is how your brand is perceived by your target audience; the overall image that makes you unique. Here’s a breakdown of what goes into a full brand identity:
Benefits of Brand Identity
A well-developed brand identity gives you a strong foundation for growth. It supports your business in a number of ways, including:
A strong brand identity sets you apart from competitors and helps you stand out in a crowded market.
Reoccurring visual elements build brand recognition, making it easier for customers to recall your brand.
Elements such as tone of voice and brand experience play at the emotional chords of your customers, leading to stronger brand loyalty.
What is Brand Strategy?
While brand identity is focused on presentation, brand strategy looks beneath what’s shown on the surface. It encompasses the direction and goals of your brand, providing a strategic roadmap for your marketing team. Brand strategy is more than what your audience sees; it’s about the decisions, planning, and actions that position your brand effectively.
What's the Difference?
Brand identity focuses on your public image. Brand strategy is the framework for how you actually deliver it. Together, they ensure your brand’s messaging, personality, and style are aligned with your business goals. You can think of it this way: brand identity is the what, while brand strategy is the how and why.
By understanding the difference between brand identity and brand strategy, you can see how they work together. Your brand identity is the sail, and your brand strategy is the wind that sets your direction. Without an identity, your brand strategy won’t get you moving. But without a strategy, you’ll have no momentum behind your identity.
What can they do for your business?
When it comes to your business, brand identity and brand strategy play crucial roles in shaping your success. Effectively implementing these concepts will have a big impact on your marketing efforts, allowing you to:
1. Establish a stronger brand presence
Establishing a brand identity lets you create more memorable imagery. This is crucial to improve your brand presence. Once you have a style that promotes customer recall, your brand strategy can make sure it’s used in a way that supports your bottom line.
2. Connect with your target audience
Brand strategy guides you in understanding your target audience, their needs, and preferences. Taking this understanding into your messaging, you can make a more personal connection with your customers – something that encourages trust and loyalty.
3. Create a reliable brand experience
Brand strategy develops a clear, consistent approach to customer relations. By extending this across every touchpoint, from your website to your social media, you become a comfortable choice for consumers.
4. Control a segment
A well-defined brand identity and strategy allows you to take control of your niche. If you become known by certain colours, logos, or messaging, you’ve essentially claimed ownership of them. Like the Cadbury purple or McDonald’s golden arches, it’s a brand risk for other companies to go anywhere near your branded elements once they’re tied to your name.
5. Inspire employee alignment
If your employees can see your brand’s purpose and values, they can become ambassadors for your brand. But for this to happen, you need to have a clear framework for the How, Why, and What of your brand.
The Key Takeaway
By combining brand identity with brand strategy, you create a more cohesive brand experience. Each audience interaction becomes an opportunity to reinforce your values and personality. This consistency builds recognition, trust, and loyalty amongst your target audience, contributing to the long-term success of your business.
At Spark, we understand how important it is to get this balance right. Our team of experts can work with you to develop comprehensive brand packages, including Communication Strategy, Logo Design, Brand Guidelines, and more. Learn about our branding services and how we can help you build a stronger brand here.