Brand identity refers to the sum of all the services that businesses offer to customers. This is its existing features, contributions, benefits, performance, quality, experience and value in owning the brand. Brand identity is the core of how businesses are perceived in customers’ eyes. Brand identity, also known as brand reconciliation, refers to everything that people have a direct or indirect relationship with the brand in their minds. McDonald’s brand in people’s minds is entertainment and fast service; On the other hand, the Volvo brand can create concepts of robustness and safety. All of these make up the brand identity.
The term identity was used in graphic applications of brands (even as corporate identity) in relation to visuality. Nowadays, the conceptualization of identity is the starting point of strategic marketing communication planning with terms such as brand identity and corporate identity. For example, the International Corporate Identity Community defines the brand as the differentiating framework that distinguishes it from its competitors and reflects the brand’s ethos, goals, and values . In terms of brand management, brand identity is considered a reference frame that helps determine the brand’s meaning, orientation, and purpose. Aaker defines brand identity as a “unique” set of brand associations. The brand identity encompasses all aspects of the brand; emphasizes the need to care about the whole rather than the parts related to the brand.
In general, the concept of identity is evaluated based on three characteristics such as durability, integrity and realism. These features are a solution developed against the challenge of managing multi-part and widespread marketing communication applications in today’s competitive and communication environment.
It is clear that identity emerges with an integrative strategy concerned in brand creation and management processes. Therefore, brand identity points to a versatile and dimensional planning framework, including visual identity.
Creating a solid brand identity can provide various benefits to the business in many ways.
We can list these benefits as follows:
- It provides differentiation.
- Provides the customer with reasons to buy.
- Instills consistency and trust in the customer.
- It affects the customer’s feelings towards the product.
- Offers solid foundations for brand extension.
- It provides the business with a strong positioning in the market.
A strong brand identity is reflected as a phenomenon that increases the value and importance of the product. The elements that make up the brand identity can be summarized as follows.
- Brand Name: A brand name is a form of expression that combines the brand’s product features with the promises it offers to the consumer and integrates with the brand positioning and brand personality. Brand names, which are as valuable as the brand itself and have a great impact on the brand’s perception, should be chosen carefully because they convey important information to the target market. A brand that brings together the values and words of the brand with the target audience through all kinds of communication methods. The name should be distinctive, easy to say and understand, and have catchy features.
- Symbol and Logo: The brand symbol is the part of the brand that can be seen with the eyes but cannot be spoken. For example, in Ferrari, the brand name, the horse, is its symbol. A strong symbol empowers brand identity; makes it easier to recognize and remember. The logo is the “formal appearance” of the brand name or company. A well-designed logo covers both formal and functional needs. Together, the brand and logo should reflect and be positioned to reflect corporate values and qualities.
- Slogan: Slogan created for an organization or a brand. It can be expressed as a short group of words used to describe and give the necessary message to convince the consumer.
- Colors: Colors contribute to the recall of the brand in the consumer’s mind and help create the perception that the brand wants to create in the consumer. Certain criteria should not be overlooked in brand color selection. The first is the message intended to be delivered to the consumer. It should be studied with people who are experts in the meanings of colors related to this subject. When choosing a color for a brand, the mood that is tried to be created in the consumer is considered.
- Packaging: Today, packaging has become very important in creating a visual effect. Packaging, which is a communication tool for the product, should protect the product and be aesthetically pleasing and appealing to the consumer.
Digital identity for the company is often confused with corporate identity; however, corporate identity represents the institution’s stance. Corporate identities need to be digitized to adapt to the digital world. For this reason, digital identity is now a must for companies. In today’s rapidly increasing competitive environment, companies that position themselves correctly in digital will continue to survive. Companies that cannot position their existence in the digital world, regardless of their business or market; unfortunately, will gradually be defeated by companies that are much smaller than themselves. Because its ambiguous identity in digital will make it invisible to the consumer. Because creating digital identities of companies also provides trust, brand loyalty and sustainable interaction on the customer side. This is precisely why every company needs to position their digital identity.
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