What Makes Great Brands Great
As designers and artists, we like to think that branding is all about symbols, colors, type, style, shape, harmony, simplicity, beauty, and all of these wonderful things. We like to think it’s less about the client, and more about us, our talent, our skills, and our craft that we’ve perfected over the years.
Then tell me, why do some brands stay average while others become great? Why do some brands have a hard time getting heard while others connect, resonate, and spread like wildfire? Before we get into that,
First, What A Brand is Not
A brand is not a logo, or an identity, or a product. Brand is the “kick” a person gets inside when they see a logo, or an identity, or a product. Why? Because people are emotional and intuitional being. There are millions of options in the market, and people pour their money to those brands whom they trust. People decide what your brand is, not the other way around. So, a brand is not what YOU say it is. It’s what the PEOPLE say it is.
The Search For Ourselves
The answer to the question, “Why do some brands have a hard time getting heard while others connect, resonate, and spread like wildfire?” is rather a simple one. It’s because those brands have tapped into their ability to see; not as themselves, but as others. They are able to see the small nuances and trends that are invisible to others.
And I’m not talking about seeing just in computer screens or in business cards, or in billboards. But through the eyes, heart, and minds of people.
Every one of us are finite creatures. We can’t do everything ourselves. We depend on the services of others to make our life complete. So throughout our lives, we are looking for those we can trust. We want to be with those who see the light we see, who believe in what we believe, who are inspired by what inspires us.
As we are searching for people and businesses that we can trust, what we are really looking for is a reflection of ourselves. In the scenery of our lives, there are words, images, sounds, and an entire array of expressions that just feels right. Everywhere we look, we can see symbols that point to what we value.
Branding is just that. It’s about using the symbols that show what you value. It’s enabling people to see who you are by expressing what you find to be true, good, and beautiful. Branding is not about saying how great you are, it’s about sharing what you believe in and moving towards it. It’s about being true to your brand and standing beside it and along the way attracting those who believe in the same things as you do. The stories and images and experiences that you love will be the symbol of trust to those who feel the same way.
As Howard Schultz said,
“If people believe they share values with a company, they will stay loyal to the brand.”
Now, let’s recap what we learned from this post.
- Great brands see themselves through the eyes, hearts, and minds of their customers.
- People are continuously looking for people and businesses that they can trust and connect to most.
- Branding is not about saying how great you are, it’s about sharing what you believe in and moving towards it.
- Great brands use symbols, images, stories, sounds, experiences that show others who they are and what they stand for, and invites those who resonate to join the journey.
- People will stay loyal to your brand if they believe they share values with your company.
- In essence, building a brand is about telling your story well.
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