Tuesday, December 13, 2011

More Than Just a Logo

“I want to build a brand for my business…all I need is a logo.” This is the common misconception running in the minds of many clients who are looking to brand their business. They misconstrue a brand for a mere symbol, logo or a trademark used on a signboard outside the company gate. However the reality is otherwise…the logo designing is just a minor part of entire branding process. A brand is what separates large corporate giants from their small scale competitors.
The biggest dilemma that graphic designers face nowadays is clients with acute brand knowledge. Sometimes a graphic designer creates a logo design for a client that fails to establish its business presence in market. The client throws all the blame of failure on the faulty logo design. However, in reality, it was not the logo that fell short and the brand that failed.

Picture this…you have never heard of McDonald’s before (just assume for a moment). You are unaware of the corporation and what it has to offer to you. Now imagine… if you pass by a ‘Golden arches’ logo in an ad or a billboard, would you be amazed by it?…Certainly… not I presume? Now coming back to reality, since famous brands like McDonalds has actively communicated their logo and established its connection with the company, which is why you have a strong awareness about it. That strong perception created in the minds of customers is the brand that has been established.

Brand is not a mark, it leaves a mark
This is the biggest fallacy of branding made by many business owners and entrepreneurs. Brand is not just a mark or a symbol that you put on your company sign board. On the contrary, a brand LEAVES a mark on your customer that is eternal and everlasting.
If you think that you can make a brand by designing a logo, then I’m afraid you’re mistaken. Brand is not a tangible thing that can be built hypothetically. A brand encompasses whatever its customers think about it. In short, you can build a logo, but it is customers who build a brand. Big Ten logo redesign is a living example of this. The company decided on their logo, but in the end it was the Big Ten fans that decided the fate of the brand.

Another major distinction between a logo and a brand is their focus span. Logos illustrates what a company stands for, what it has to offer and what is its purpose of existence. In contrast, a brand has strategic focus. It depicts a vision of the firm as to what the brand will be and what it promises to its customers in the future.

A logo design is a visual representation of any company or business. It vividly projects the mesas age of the company’s existence in the industry. A brand goes one step further in protecting the image of the firm. Whatever you establish through your logo design is protected by your brand. The gap logo fiasco is a perfect example in this case. The company decided on a redesigned logo but failed badly in front of their customers. However, their longstanding brand power protected them from severe damage.
To wrap it up in a nutshell, logos lay the foundation of a brand but are not entirely sufficient to establish their presence. Brand marketing does not simply end on a logo design. They must be thoroughly communicated and inculcated in order to be recognized.

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