For companies, the right corporate branding is indispensable these days. When customers or business partners visit a company’s website, it is important that its content is convincing, appealing and subconsciously evokes emotions from start to finish.

This is exactly what branding is responsible for. Now, not every company is able to design its own corporate identity accordingly. But that doesn’t matter, because there are professionals who deal with exactly this topic, such as a design agency or branding agency.

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What is Branding?

Originally, the term “branding” comes from animal breeding. Cattle, pigs or even horses are branded for identification purposes. In marketing, the term “branding” stands for marketing measures that put a stamp on a company or its brand. This increases the recognition value and remains in people’s minds.

Branding thus attempts to link the advertised brand with an image. It should be in front of consumers’ eyes every time they hear about the brand or come into contact with it. An image is created, which becomes the figurehead of the company.

It is associated with images, messages, and emotions that people identify with. This approach increases the intangible value of the brand and builds trust and customer loyalty.

First, however, an idea and a product are needed that can be linked to each other. The product can also be a person, a place, or the company itself. Branding then assigns certain characteristics or a story to the product, which remains in the customer’s mind.

The branding project usually includes brand design and logo, slogans, or certain advertising music. Brand names, brand presence, and corporate identity are also included here.

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Why Do I Need Branding?

First and foremost, branding is about standing out from the competition. Only when the customer consciously decides in favor of a brand, because the company image and branding have been burned into his mind, does branding help you succeed.

This happens when quality, messages, and associations (for example, an attitude towards life) are associated with that product. So successful branding develops an emotional connection between the customer and the brand, whether through habituation or personal identification.

What Does a Branding Agency Do?

Top branding agencies ensure that your brand is shaped. The agency develops a brand concept and your brand promise for you and with you, shapes the experience of the brand, manages the positioning in the market, differentiates from the competition, works out unique selling points, gives tips on pricing policy and the target group.

All these things are merged in terms of content and visuals so that in the end a corporate image is created from a single mold.

The development of such a coherent concept requires many discussions. The agency’s creative director will guide you through the brand development process from the very beginning. Even if you are only at the beginning of your start-up, collect ideas and develop them as a mission. In cooperation with the design agency, your very individual brand strategy will emerge from this.

This consists of the following branding elements, among others:

Corporate Design

Corporate design refers to the visual appearance of a company. It includes all components that make up a brand: Logo design, color choice, figurative language, font, and much more. The corporate design underlines the special features of the company and forms a visual distinction from the competition.

In communication, the corporate design is, therefore, the fingerprint, which is unique in design and clearly stands out from other market participants, making it immensely important for differentiation and attention.

Brand Building

Building a brand is a building block of entrepreneurial success. While in earlier history it was enough to simply sell products or services, in modern times you have to do more to elicit loyalty from customers and consumers. This is done by giving your product or brand a face.

This is called brand building and includes logos, packaging, messaging, web design, etc. If these building blocks are used correctly and in a targeted manner, a brand identity is created that presents the values and quality characteristics of the products or services to consumers.

It is based on psychological, design, and functional characteristics and inspires trust, desire, or identification.

Summary of benefits through brand building:

  • Creates trust, brand identity and authenticity.
  • Encourages interested parties to buy
  • Provides orientation and differentiates the product/service from the competition
  • Is basic building block for brand building, positioning and extension

How Does Brand Building Work?

The demands of consumers are increasing. As stated above, the mere sale of products and their functional purpose has long since ceased to be sufficient. The target group wants to identify with the brand and trust it. Accordingly, companies need to be experienced, accessible, and authentic.

The task of brand building, brand design, and brand strategy are to communicate the characteristics of the product to the outside world via social media, the company’s own website, the Internet, or via third parties.

It has proven to be particularly effective to highlight performance and differentiating features in comparison to competitors and to arousing emotions.

Brand building is an ongoing process. After the brand has been established, the brand identity must be constantly worked on; after all, reputation and image should remain free of damage. In order to benefit from the branding of your brand in the long term, a good reputation is enormously important, therefore:

  • Consistently and continuously pursue brand maintenance and brand expansion!
  • Constantly improve the quality of your products and services!
  • Network through social media and backlinks!

Brand Design

Brand Design includes the translation and publication of the company’s vision and culture, the positioning of the brand, and the strategy of a brand in a visual image. The main goal is to differentiate one’s own offer from that of the market participants. Graphic design or web design agencies support you with a team of creative minds.

In addition to the development of a logo, the design agency uses all design aspects that serve the presentation of the brand.

Examples of Successful Branding

  • The bitten apple of Apple stands for technical high-end products and an elegant, clear design. Even high prices are accepted by the customer.
  • The curved white lettering on a red background was first used as a brand design by Coca Cola in 1887. The bottle shape has also gained cult status. It is recognized everywhere, even without imprint. One example of successful brand extension is the Christmas Coca Cola truck, which focuses on family and friends at the end of the year. To this day, the main graphic features of 1887 have not changed.
  • Perfect corporate branding is also demonstrated by the Swedish furniture manufacturer IKEA. The company stands for low prices, self-assembling, robust furniture and a family atmosphere. At least in Germany, IKEA has thus been able to gain a monopoly position.
  • Style and extravagance are embodied by fashion and clothing brands such as Hugo Boss and Armani. Branding has been extended to care products and perfumes.

What Criteria Do I Use to Choose a Branding Agency?

It is really not easy to find the right design or branding agency for your company among the many agencies. Sortlist can help you with this. Tell us your ideas and we will make a pre-selection of suitable branding agencies for you.

Take your time to get an overview. Start by identifying your own company goals. This will enable you to evaluate the offers all the more precisely. When selecting an agency, pay particular attention to the following overarching criteria:

  • How does the agency develop the branding goals? What form does the concept take? What methods does the agency use? Are there workshops?
  • Does the design agency advise on brand architecture, etc.?
  • What is the agency’s expertise in brand and product names?
  • Is there experience in creating a complete corporate design? If so, how often has the agency already created corporate designs?
  • Does the experience go beyond creating logos? Does the agency show expertise in the interaction of all design measures?
  • Does the design agency work according to a structured plan of action?
  • Have you looked at the agency’s references? Do the projects they have handled so far match your expectations?
  • Which clientele does the agency serve (which industries)?
  • What is the size of the agency?
  • Do you feel in good hands with the agency’s representatives, the creative director and his team? What is your gut feeling?
  • Are the costs for your assignment reasonable? Do you feel the offer is transparent and clear? Do the payment terms fit?

Top Branding Agencies

In order to gain the trust of your customers faster than the competition, working with the right partner is incredibly important. If you are looking beyond a branding agency, at Sortlist, you’ll find a list of all marketing expertises’ agencies all around the world that might suit you.